Rotterdam Central Station Celebrates Green Re-opening
Rotterdam, The Netherlands – The Rotterdam Central Station provides transport in the form of trains, buses, trams and metro to over 100,000 passengers a day, rivaling even the Netherlands’ national airport, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. This number is expected to top 300,000 daily travelers by 2025. A massive construction and renovation effort began in 2005, with a focus on sustainability. The first solar panel was unveiled in 2011 with the official reopening taking place earlier this year.
The final, total coverage of solar cells on the station’s roof is 10,000 m2, or about the size of a football field, making it the largest solar panel station roof in Europe. This represents a third of the roof’s total surface area, with the rest being unsuitable for the placement of solar panels. Still, this considerable coverage is expected to produce 250 MW of energy each year, enough to supply approximately 100 households. This energy will be used to power escalators, elevators and lighting within the station. The solar cells are actually coverings on windows, with a high level of transparency that allows sunlight through to provide natural lighting for the station.
This massive ‘solar roof’ is just one way the Rotterdam Central Station incorporates sustainable aspects in to its rebuild. Other elements include heat and cold storage, separated sewer systems, and making use of mirrors on the ceiling to direct extra sunlight in to even the lower levels of the station.