Valley is home to almost 300 young trees, shrubs, and approximately 13,500 smaller plants, with a total of over 220 different plant species. Anticipating greater diversity than the buildings’ human inhabitants, there are bird- and bat-boxes as well as “hotels” for bees and other beneficial insects.
The color palette of the plants and trees selected for the site was specifically chosen to echo the colors one typically sees in the mountains, further emphasizing the naturalistic feel of the project.
The construction of Valley was tricky, literally from the foundations, up. With two-thirds of the Netherlands’ land area below sea level, the Dutch have become adept at great feats of engineering to provide solid, enduring foundations. The foundation for Valley required an underwater concrete pour and a brief insight can be viewed here.
While Valley’s sheer, mirror-glazed outer shell resembles the type of office building one would expect to see in a central business district, the opposing craggy “rockfaces” are a phantasmagorical wonder of fenestration, architectural projections, cantilevered spaces and soffits, whose nooks and crannies offer spaces that are either shady, private and secluded, or wide open and sun-soaked, with spectacular views across the city for the residents of Valley’s 200 apartments — each with a unique floorplan. And everywhere you look, there’s greenery cascading across the “rockface,” which itself is clad in over 40,000 natural stone tiles.
You can see the love in Winy’s eyes when he talks about this project. “You can say it’s insane, but I love insanity, and it’s insanely beautiful.”