Morgue – Schiphol’s first cradle-to-cradle building: Respectfully comfortable

The new morgue is the first cradle-to-cradle building at and belonging to Schiphol. When the structure’s lifespan has ended, all the recycled materials can easily be reused in a new project. It also meets the criteria for a BREEAM rating of Excellent.

The morgue is located on the ‘border’ between airside and landside, which allows the deceased to be transported directly to and from the aircraft. The new morgue was designed to accommodate a range of different cultures and mourning rituals, with space for mourners to pay their last respects to their loved ones.

Dismantlable and sustainable

As well as being the first cradle-to-cradle building at Schiphol, the morgue also meets the criteria for a BREEAM rating of Excellent. This construction standard has been achieved through insulating and energy-generating applications, such as the climate-resilient circular water system that filters waste water and stores it for later use. The comprehensive treatment system even makes the water suitable for use as drinking water. The electricity is generated through built-in solar panels and the building is illuminated with energy-efficient LED lighting, while the building’s heating system uses a heat pump, removing the need for gas.

Designed according to nature’s principles

We also have an environmental plan for the morgue. As well as a ‘green roof’, we have also installed beehives. Bees play an essential role in our ecosystem, and now that their numbers are under threat we feel we have a role in supporting bee populations. The building has also been fitted with ENS technology, which captures particulates from the air and makes for a healthier working and living environment.

The architect’s design for the building follows the Fibonacci Sequence, using principles found in nature. This gives the morgue a respectful, comfortable atmosphere, whether visitors come alone or as part of a larger group. The construction of this morgue is contributing to Schiphol’s ambition to become a Zero Waste airport by 2030.