© Ossip Van Duivenbode
Mei architects and planners is an enterprising, knowledge-intensive office that focuses on development and innovation in architecture. The office was set up in 2003 by architect Robert Winkel and is based in Rotterdam. Mei is particularly noted for transforming existing buildings such as the Jobsveem warehouse, Delfshaven factory and Fenix warehouses in Rotterdam. And it has completed striking new-build projects such as Schiecentrale 4B in Rotterdam, De Verkenner in Utrecht and McDonald’s Coolsingel 44 in Rotterdam. In addition, the office has drawn up urban designs that include dynamic master plans for Moss Verket in Norway, London in England and Nantes in France. The work of Mei has been widely published and received numerous accolades.
Mei likes to explore subjects in depth, and the designers on the team know all the ins and outs of building regulations. And thanks to his many years as a member of both Rotterdam and Amsterdam’s review committee for building permits, Robert Winkel possesses a wealth of knowledge about local authority design and planning policy. All this expertise forms an excellent basis for highly complex projects. Moreover, delving into history in order to ensure that proposals for renewal draw naturally on existing qualities is something Mei takes for granted. Demonstrating this approach is the rich variety of building transformations carried out by the office across the country, among them a number of projects to convert historic buildings that enjoy a protected status at municipal or national level. They include the renewal of listed monument Lijnbaan shopping precinct in Rotterdam, the Gouda Cheese Warehouse, and the Jobsveem warehouse.