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Alma Station

Alma Station is a station on Line 1 of the Brussels subway that serves the local campus of the Catholic University of Louvain. It was designed in 1978 by Lucien Kroll, one of the most important architects on the worldwide architectural scene who was hailed as "the father of sustainable architecture”. 
Opened on 7th May 1982, the station is a manifesto of the architect’s philosophy. Kroll opposed the entire rationalist tradition and this makes his architectural projects bizarre and unexpected as he followed the principle that the range of possible solutions for a project should come directly from its specific situation and circumstances. 

His travels and multiple experiences conducted through the widest range of life conditions in the modern world, led him to doubt western progress and supremacy. This is why he persistently used organic forms rather than geometric abstractions and focused on craft skills and the creative process instead of engineering and perfection. His work is never an anonymous celebration of an institution, as shown clearly by Alma Station, which is an integral part of the student district and plays an important role in its lifestyle while blending in perfectly with its gardens and walkways. Here, a series of different irregular and organic structures are called upon to operate together and cooperate closely to define a naturalistic vision. 

In 1978 Michel Droyers joined the Lucien Kroll Atelier to design the lighting system for the station and he was called on again in 2019 to work on the refurbishment project. The lighting system blends into the features of this complex thanks to the potential of the Underscore InOut luminaire that has been installed to illuminate the bases of the pillars that evoke the form and asperity of the bark on the trees planted outside. The system is also powered by emergency circuits to ensure the safety of the people using the station in the event of an electrical network failure. The pillars support a ceiling that consists of the triangular faces of a prism and Underscore InOut light lines have been used to emphasize certain edges of the prisms and therefore highlight the shape of the ceiling. 

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  • Year
  • Client
    Bruxelles Mobilité
  • Architectural project:
    Lucien Kroll
    Bruxelles Mobilité
  • Lighting project:
    Lucien Kroll
    Michel Droyers
  • Photographer
    Kris Dekeijser