We love it when museums take a step forward in creativity, highlighting the design trends of the moment. The bold look of the Biesbosch Museum in Werkendam, The Netherlands, is the result of an eight-month renovation project led by Studio Marco Vermeulen.

A new wing that accommodates a restaurant and a display area for contemporary art was added to the complex. Studio Joyce Langezaal reinvented the permanent exhibition building, where the historical development of the region is explained to the public. This area also accommodates a library, multipurpose theater, reception area and museum shop.

The architects decided to keep the hexagonal shape of the original buildings, whose extensive windows look out over the water from the man-made island. A harmonious exterior look was created by covering the volumes in grass for a living roof, providing not only a lovely aesthetic but also energy efficiency.

“The earthworks on the northwestern side and the green roof serve as additional insulation and a heat buffer,” the architects said. “On cold days, a biomass stove maintains the building’s temperature, while in warmer months, water from the river flows through the same piping to cool the museum.”

A highlight of the landscaping is a pathway that leads visitors across the green land forms. Enjoy the visual tour of this Dutch museum renovation. [Photography by Ronald Tilleman]