Soda provides advice on a wide variety of topics. Questions and subject matters are often complex. Therefore, Soda starts every advice with clearly defining the question or problem posed. Soda's expertise covers the following areas, among others:
Museum Schiedam > research regarding sustainability, improving museum functionality and safety - in collaboration with Bordewijk/De Adviseurs, 2018 (>2022)
The motive for the Museum Schiedam to commission a broad investigation was the fact that over the years a 'building problem' had arisen concerning various aspects such as fire safety, security, building physica, climate control and installation. Together with Bordewijk/De Adviseurs, Soda conducted a thorough analysis.
Follow-up - The analysis resulted in Soda being commissioned to design and supervise the improvement process and renovation. The assignment was further expanded with related issues such as sustainability, improving logistics and routing, visitor orientation/experience, exhibition spaces and (LED) lighting. The renovation has highly improved the quality of the museum in all respects. The museum reopened in May 2022. See also 'Museums'.
Textile Museum > advice / vision document, 2022
The Textile Museum (Tilburg) has ambitious plans to renovate. The motivation for this is that the museum building no longer meets the needs of the museum visitors and the creators of today and tomorrow. Mecanoo and engineering firm ABT are asked for a design study regarding the redevelopment of the Textile Museum and its surroundings.
Soda was invited to give preliminary advice on how the core triangle 'Textile Museum-Textile Lab-education' can best be realized in a new context. To this end Soda developedg a vision document together with the Textile Museum which zooms in on functional, logistical and content-related opportunities. The vision document is part of the programme of requirements for the design study by Mecanoo architects and ABT engineering firm.
The neighbouring Dröge building is also interesting and offers opportunities for collaborations with education etc. Together with an inviting shop, catering facilities and an outdoor area, a place will be created that links the historical context of the site to the role of textiles in the past, present and future. A place where everyone - young and old, professional makers and visitors - can discover, create, learn and meet.
(Photo: Chiharu Shiota, Me somewhere else, 2018)
Zaans Museum > feasibility study design, sustainability and redevelopment, 2019 (>2023)
The reason for the feasibility study carried out by Soda was the Zaans Museum's aspiration to render the building more suitable for the increased number of visitors. In addition, the museum wished to focus on continued growth and upgrade the outdated technology. The ambition was also to develop a large exhibition space for large-scale alternating exhibitions. This would also allow the museum to host a major exhibition of Monet, who once lived in Zaandam.
Follow-up - Soda developed several scenarios including calculations. In all scenarios Soda covered key aspects such as routing, flexibility, sustainability and visitor experience. (Photo: Zaans Museum)
Monopole Schiedam > advice incorporation offices and museum project spaces in a monument, 2021 (>2022)
The immediate reason for this advice was that the cinema (a municipal monument) located directly opposite the Museum Schiedam became vacant. This offered opportunities for the museum: as a result of the renovation of the museum, important spaces such as office and project spaces, an auditorium and rental spaces were absent. Soda advised on how to locate these spaces and functions in the former cinema.
Follow-up - Soda remained involved as a consultant in 2022.
Depot council and province Utrecht > feasibility study and analysis of joint use by various partners, 2019
The starting point for this advice to the council of Utrecht was the fact that the depot of Centraal Museum Utrecht (CMU) was no longer properly functioning and had outgrown its capacity. With regard to both the investments that would be needed to realize a new depot and efficiency, the aim was to have multiple partners use the new depot: the CMU, the Universiteitsmuseum, Museum Speelklok, Utrecht City Heritage and Utrecht Province Heritage.
Follow-up - The advice Soda developed in collaboration with Driepas and Bordewijk/De Adviseurs included on the one hand the drafting of an organizational model, and on the other hand the requirements that such a model imposes on a new building with regard to issues such as logistics, climatic preconditions, sustainability, security, transport, handling and good work spaces. The advice resulted in a Programme of Requirements that was taken as the basis for the tendering and design process.
Miffy Museum > feasibility study transformation Dick Bruna House to Miffy Museum, 2014
Soda was approached to conduct a feasibility study with regard to the former 'Dick Bruna House' which is part of the Centraal Museum Utrecht (CMU). It was a matter of a spatial task: the Dick Bruna House had become too small and showed both information about Dick Bruna and his world-famous creation, Miffy. The underlying questions were: How can the Dick Bruna House be expanded? What are the opportunities within the national monument, or should one expand at the rear? Soda developed several scenarios in response to these questions.
Follow-up - Based on the research and the resulting advice, the decision was made to expand within the existing monument. In addition, a content-wise split was made: information on Dick Bruna himself would be moved to the CMU, allowing the Dick Bruna house to focus on Miffy. Thus the Dick Bruna house became the 'Miffy Museum'. Soda was subsequently commissioned to carry out the design and execution. See also 'Museums'.
Miffy Museum > feasibility study on enlarging the museum by means of a new building, 2018 (>2023)
After the first feasibility study, a second followed in 2018. The immediate cause this time was the overwhelming success of the Miffy Museum. As a result, there was once again the question as to how the museum could be enlarged. The Dick Bruna House originally attracted around 40,000 visitors per year; the plans for the Miffy Museum had aimed at doubling this to 80,000. However, it turned out to be 185,000. This pushed the building to its literal limits. Opportunities had to be explored: both in the optimization of the existing museum, and in new building.
Follow-up - The outcome is that at the back of the museum (a listed building) a new 900m2 structure is being built, containing catering facilities, a large exhibition space, technology and a theatre, a stairwell and lift. Soda created the design and is supervising the execution. The completion is planned summer 2023: the museum will be ready to welcome 175,000visitors each year and even more.
Afrika Museum > feasibility study and directional design trajectory to improve climate control and hospitality functionality.
Research into the redesign of the grounds and museum layout in collaboration with landscape architect Peter van Baaren, 2019
The impetus was the pitch that the Afrika Museum issued for a study seeking solutions for a full service horeca and the improvement of the entrance area including the museum shop. Other components of the study included the possibilities for renovating and climat control the exhibition rooms, and opportunities to improve the connection of the museum building with the immediately adjoining outdoor museum.
Follow-up - In its advice, Soda emphasized the museum's special geographic location: in collaboration with landscape architect Peter van Baaren, Soda recommended that the qualities of the surrounding moraine landscape should be put to maximum use.
Centraal Museum Utrecht > analysis, 2012 (>2016)
The motive for the study of Centraal Museum Utrecht (CMU) was the urgency to find a solution for the unclear museum routing and wandering visitors. There was also considerable friction between running a modern museum business on the one hand, and the building complex in which the museum is located on the other. Possibilities for renting out and opening in the evening were very limited. The complex was closed and inward-looking, and hardly any use was being made of the communal garden area of the museum and the Nicolai church. The most common complaint though was that visitors got lost and after visiting the complex, they had no idea if they had seen everything.
It was decided to embark on a broad approach, starting with an analysis of the building, the surroundings and the organisation. This led to a bid book that served as a basis for the design and realisation of the CMU's redesign.
Important conclusions included:
Follow-up - Soda+ developed the design and realised the redesign together with the museum, which was completed in 2016. SODA+ was a collaboration of Jorrit Noyons and Ronald Buïel of Soda with architects Gabri Klarenbeek and Hagen Zeisberg. See also 'Museums'.
Centraal Museum Utrecht > advisor regarding the sustainability and improvement of the museum functionality of the '1920 Wing', 2021
The so-called '1920 Wing' of the Centraal Museum Utrecht (CMU) was the only part of the CMU that had not yet been renovated. In an earlier stage, Soda developed plans regarding climat control of the non-climatized parts. This is now being combined with the municipality's ambition to improve sustainability.
Follow-up - Soda is involved as an advisor based on its knowledge of the building and is involved in the process as an advisor to the museum.