G1609 Chapel Ninove

Practice / Shortlisted

The Chapel of Our Lady ten Beukenboom in Ninove is being converted into a home. A light steel structure is pushed against the eastern wall and makes the spacious space habitable.
Two profiled steel intermediate floors cantilever over a portico structure on the central axis of the chapel. They are precisely trimmed by the semi-circular choir, the old front door and a slender spiral staircase that connects the different floors.

A single new doorway in the choir breaks open the closed character of the chapel and offers a wide view of the fields behind.
The project is unique in several respects. The reconversion ensures that an important piece of heritage can be preserved. Dealing with the existing is essential as a sustainability strategy. After consultation
with the heritage service, a contemporary approach was chosen to accommodate a home in the Chapel. The available space is very efficiently arranged with compact rooms that are spatially connected by means of a loft. The footprint of the chapel has been respected and the existing greenery has been preserved.

Apart from the furniture, nothing has been removed from the original chapel. The original volume is therefore intact, one additional opening provides a view of the landscape and provides a second access. The original tiles have been cleaned and replaced as a new floor. All existing elements have therefore been reused or restored.


Secondary windows on the inside provide a continuous windproof shell while retaining the original stained glass windows. The design of the rational steel structure follows the principle of an intelligent hull and is adaptable and can therefore be arranged flexibly in the future. The whole is demountable and consists of standard steel sections. Even the floor finish consists of dry-mounted wooden fibreboards with underfloor heating in a click system. No glues have been used.





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