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The Abbey has been an important meeting place for Zeeland for centuries. The complex is recognizable from a great distance with the Lange Jan. The 'House of the Province' brings Zeeland and its surroundings together.

Meeting room as an introduction to the implementation of the new way of working






Province of Zeeland


The design of the meeting space as an introduction to the implementation of the new way of working for the Province of Zeeland by M+R interior architecture

M+R has designed a meeting room with an adjacent courtyard in the Provincial House in Middelburg, which dates from the twelfth century. The meeting room is a meeting place centrally located in the Abbey where employees of the Province of Zeeland can meet each other. M+R has created large openings within the monumental structure of the building so that the meeting space is open and easily accessible.

The openings are designed from an interplay of lines of connections inspired by the urban renewal plans of Paris by Georges-Eugène Haussmann for the Avenue des Champs-Élysées and as a metaphor a pile head with its drying cracks: a center with connecting lines. The connecting lines have defined the spaces and their use, the islands created within the lines have been designed as different meeting or consultation places. The color scheme of the space is related to the color palette of the Province of Zeeland, as well as the use of materials in which folklore is translated into contemporary applications, innovative and sustainable. The interplay of lines continues into the courtyard where wooden decking (piers) are located, which create a natural relationship with the entrance and surrounding functions. The next step is to realize the reflective folly in the courtyard, to expand the capacity of the meeting and meeting rooms and to renovate the entrance.

An innovative working environment has now been designed for building G, the Librije. Within the monumental structure of the building and with respect for the monument, M+R has designed a flexible working environment for the Province of Zeeland. Prior to the final design, inspiration sessions with employees contributed to the creation of the working environment. The design reflects the DNA of the Province of Zeeland and bio-based natural products and materials were chosen for the installation package. Natural stone, glass and wood – products that can be found in the nearby area.

Every two years the Abbey brings the world together during the presentation of the Four Freedom Awards. With its rich history and deeply rooted traditions, the design of the Abbey also keeps up with the times. Since 2013, the official organization of the Province of Zeeland has been completely housed there. On behalf of the provincial government, the organization works for Zeeland through visible results and in mutual coherence and cooperation. With its meeting function, the Abbey makes that work possible. It brings people together, contemporary, in various forms, in the style of Zeeland, land in the sea. Together we work on results for Zeeland!

(source: Province of Zeeland, Abbey meeting guide, February 25, 2015)


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