Carolina Pérez Rabelo

Water Museum . Rotterdam

Carolina Pérez Rabelo . + isarch

A water museum that wants to raise awareness towards the river and to activate the public space along its shore, making this space communicate a dynamic story of the shifting relationship between land and water.

Water and Rotterdam are inseparable. The key feature of the city is the river Maas, the city's lifeline. However, there are not many opportunities to get close to it: the riverside is surrounded by a protection dike that creates a physical and visual barrier between city and river.
The primary intention of this design is to raise awareness about the river. Choosing a location directly on the dike and the river, the water museum aims to reflect ‘in situ’ the qualities of
the place, where the dynamics of the river are a special feature with the water level varying with the tides and seasons.
The building is conceived as a port structure, looking at the structural simplicity of the piers located throughout Rotterdam's industrial port. The structure is incorporated in every scale: it's the last skin, it organizes a sequential promenade, it dissolves, duplicates or disappears to generate openings and control the sights. It is a placed above the river, blurring the boundaries between the exhibition and the river's reflection in its interior.

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