This building in Amsterdam is almost 100% reusable

Dutch architecture firm MVRDV has completed Matrix One — a 6-storey, energy-efficient, office and laboratory block constructed using over 120,000 reusable components. 

The building is the largest of seven that make up the Matrix Innovation Center in the Amsterdam Science Park, which serves as a hub for scientists and entrepreneurs developing solutions to some of the world’s toughest challenges.

Matrix One has been designed for disassembly: almost everything from the doors and windows to ceilings and furniture is fully detachable and reusable. Even the floors are made from prefabricated concrete slabs with no fixed connections — they can simply be unscrewed and removed. 

MVRDV teamed up with Dutch startup Madaster to create ‘material passports’ for the building. These digital IDs store key information about each component — like weight, dimensions, and material characteristics — which aids efficient reuse further down the line.

Once the building reaches the end of its useful life or gets renovated, these components could be available for purchase on a second-hand marketplace (think eBay for buildings). According to MVRDV, 90% of the building’s materials can be used again. 

In the future, we hope this is how all buildings will work,” said MVRDV partner Frans de Witte.