Sorba Alpolic L

Completed – Theater De Stoep in Spijkenisse (NL)

From the very first moment that Spijkenisse Municipal Council selected UNStudio’s design for the new theatre to be built there, Sorba was closely involved in the realisation of the façades. UNStudio made use of Sorba’s knowledge and experience several times during the design phase, in order to reach the definite design.


The tender for Theatre De Stoep was won in the end by Vorm Bouw from Papendrecht. Sorba and Vorm Bouw had collaborated on earlier work in Spijkenisse; the new construction for the COOP/car park, another UNStudio design, and situated next to Theater De Stoep.

From the very beginning, Vorm Bouw was set on collaborating with Sorba for the realisation of the façades, partly because of their particular complexity, and partly because of UNStudio requiring the use of Alpolic. During the engineering phase, Sorba was able to adapt the 3D model of the steel construction, including the dimensioning of the concrete floors and walls, to the 3D model of the façade according to the architect’s wishes. Due to the fact that Sorba masters perfectly the art of 3D modelling, the company was in a unique position to determine the dimensioning of the HSB elements. Consequently, Sorba was responsible not only for the eye-catching, beautiful lines of the façade cladding, but also for most of the double-curved HSB elements behind the cladding.

The façade cladding was realised in Alpolic FR, produced by Mitsubishi, who opened a factory producing this material in Wiesbaden (Germany) in September of this year. A particularly high-quality aluminium composite, with a Lumiflon coating, known for its unusually good performance in difficult environments. This is also the reason why Sorba recommended the use of this material for this project. “Mitsubishi gives guarantees on this material which surpass anything the competition has to offer”, explains Jan Maarten Lieverdink, head of Sales at Sorba.

An interesting detail is the diagonally-place openings which glow a soft pink at twilight, following the lines of the façade cladding. This glow is caused by the integrated LED lighting placed by Sorba behind the sheeting, which reflects off the pink Alpolic sheeting below. In addition, the effect of the aforementioned eye-catching flowing lines combined with the alternating double-curved and sleek surfaces of the façade is really striking.

Ben van Berkel was exceptionally pleased with the final result, and full of praise in his remarks. “Don’t we create wonderful things together”, he said enthusiastically to Sorba’s Eric Hogeboom.