[ SHL Architects ] International Criminal Court in The Hague

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Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects has been named as one of three winning architectural practices in the competition to design the International Criminal Court’s new headquarters in The Hague.

Location: The Hague, Netherlands
Competition type: Restricted anonymous project competition
Client: The International Criminal Court
Subconsultants: Royal Haskoning, Bosch & Fjord
Project Year: 2008
Construction Year: 2011-2014
Constructed Area: 46,000 sqm
Images: SHL

More images and text from the architects after the break.


SHLa, working with Bosch & Fjord and Royal Haskoning, will now enter into a consultation process alongside the other two practices on the shortlist to determine the overall winner.

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SHLa’s design interprets the ICC’s cultural ideals, promoting the themes of democracy, longevity and plurality. The building’s sculptural composition, made from rows of various-sized square towers united by a rectangular base, will be integrated into the dunes of dry and wet grasslands that surround the site. Visitors will be able to see this interesting juxtaposition from the public garden - an open, democratic space for contemplation and unity. The structure’s base, with its row of towers, forms an open structure that does not obstruct views of the dunes behind it.

Overlooking the garden at the base of the towers a vibrant working community is proposed with a mix of offices and meeting rooms. shla’s design aims to create a feeling of cohesion that is consistent with the practice’s democratic approach to design.

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“We are delighted that the ICC jury has selected our design for this extremely prestigious shortlist. The practice has tried to create a building which reflects the ICC’s core values of compassion and impartiality, whilst also creating a striking structure that complements the surrounding landscape.”
explains Bjarne Hammer, Creative Director and partner of schmidt hammer lassen architects.

On Tuesday 18th of November, an exhibition presenting all 19 entries for the architectural competition was opened in The Hague City Hall. Apart from the three winners, the exhibition will showcase the competition entries of internationally renowned architects such as Mecanoo architecten, David Chipperfield and OMA / SeARCH.

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