Case study: New spectacular climbing hall in Leeuwarden, the Netherlands

Leeuwarden (NL), well-known as being the start and finish of the 200km Elfstedentocht (a long-distance skating event) that is held in severe winters, has had an extraordinary new climbing hall since December: ‘Noardwand’.

In the flat northern landscape of the Netherlands, there are no natural areas where you can go climbing. But now it’s possible in this striking new 25-metre-high building that has an extraordinary composite exterior wall, mounted on SAB-Carrier panels. Inside there are various spectacular climbing walls.

The most modern climbing hall in the Netherlands has something for everyone: a lead climbing wall, Clip ‘n Climb, speed climbing, speleology, an exterior climbing wall and bouldering. Professional climbers can even train in the lead, speed and bouldering categories. These three categories will be Olympic disciplines for the first time in Tokyo in 2020.

The hyper modern building has been developed by Vaessen based on the Design & Build concept. Vaessen is a specialised builder of sports accommodation and has often worked with Cladding Partners for the installation of the metal roof and wall cladding. It took just ten months to erect the unique and hyper modern building with the exterior and interior walls being created more or less simultaneously; a joint BIM model was frequently used.

During the installation of the filler construction on the SAB-Carrier W135.1020 TL carrier panels that have a trapezium profile (Photo: New Digit)

Richard Benneker, the architect, designed the climbing hall as a kind of mountainside. Sufficient daylight enters the building through a number of windows. Cladding Partners, the roof and wall specialist, modelled its part of the project in 3D BIM. SAB Carrier W135.1020 TL sandwich panels were used as the basis for the wall cladding. A filler construction has been attached to the SAB-profiel panels. The exterior facade is clad with an aluminium composite with its own 3D design and gives the façade its rocklike appearance. This cladding is also installed on the roof. The roof structure consists, among other things of SAB 106R+/750 P3L-B deep deck profiles. The perforations in the SAB roof decking improve the acoustics in the hall and the Colorcoat RAL 9010 finish optimally reflects light.

Aluminium composite is attached to the SAB-Carrier W135.1020 TL carrier panels with trapezium profile. (Photo: New Digit)

In total, 792 m² of SAB 106R+/750 and 427 m2 of SAB 135R/930 deep deck profiles were used for the project. In addition, 1.628 m2 SAB-Carrier W 135.1020 TL sandwich panels in Colorcoat Prisma® were used for the facade. “It’s simply a good product and SAB provides an excellent service,” says Jeroen van der Velden, project leader at Cladding Partners. “It’s a project to be very proud of.”
Customer: BV Sport Leeuwarden
Architect:   Richard Benneker, Vaessen Architecten & Ingenieurs
Contractor: Vaessen BV
Installation company:  Cladding Partners

The climbing hall’s Noardwand name
The name Noardwand has various meanings. It is a link to the climbing hall’s northerly location in the Netherlands, in addition, the North faces of the Alps are known to offer the most challenging climbing routes in Europe. A north face, as the name would suggest, is a climbing route that faces north. The Eiger, Matterhorn and Grandes Jorasses are the three best-known faces that are called north face (information from the Mountain Network operator).

The SAB-Carrier W135.1020 TL carrier panels slowly disappear behind the aluminium composite. (Photo: New Digit)

The final result clearly shows the freedom the SAB-Carrier W135.1020 TL panels can offer. (Photo: Cladding Partners)

Impression of the inside of the climbing hall. The deep deck profiles are creatively oriented. (Photo: Mountain Network)