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Photo: Dudok Architectuur Centrum
In 1912, entrepreneur F. de Wit had a car garage built in the Art Nouveau style on Naarderstraat with a shell roof, which was very modern for the time. The building soon acquired new functions. For many years it housed a cinema. By the middle of the second decade of the twenty-first century, little of the original design was left. Demolition seemed imminent, but was narrowly prevented when parts of the original facade emerged. The building was immediately designated as a municipal monument. Repurposing followed and in 2018 a food hall with a beer brewery opened its doors in a completely restored building.
Garage owner De Wit had a striking building erected on Naarderstraat, where the old farms had been demolished a few years earlier. Architect J.R. de Jong designed the building as a large open hall. Civil engineer G. Kuypers designed the special and at the time very modern shell roof of reinforced concrete that spanned the enormous free space. In those days, concrete was a new building material. To realize the sloping roof shape, it was cast in a large mould. The roof was provided with square light openings. The enormous showroom windows were flanked by (Doric) pilasters. Two facade reliefs were placed in the arched field, which refer to modern times and the function of the building by means of a car steering wheel. High on the facade, the name ‘De Wit Autopalace’ adorned a steel frame.
Not much later, the letters NSF adorned the iron frame. In 1919, the Dutch Signal Devices Factory set up the building as a temporary assembly department, until it moved to the new factory on Jan van der Heijdenstraat in 1921. The former garage was subsequently used as a party building with an exhibition and theater hall and the name Trianon replaced that of NSF in the steel frame. The building was renovated several times, partly because of the fire safety requirements imposed on a party building. In 1927 the banquet hall was taken over by the Casino Theater.
Architect A.D.B. Maas from Rotterdam adapted the facade and the facade reliefs were hidden behind facade panels. The large glass openings disappeared to make way for narrow vertical windows and an entrance with cloakroom under a canopy. Above the entrance was a large light box with the name Casino. The steel frame also disappeared from the roof. Movies were shown in the Casino Theater from the start and gradually the cinema function took over. In 1972 the building was then extensively renovated by Architectenbureau J.M. Janssen from Overasselt. There were two cinema halls. The front facade was packed as a rectangular box and fitted with siding. Also on the inside nothing was visible of the shell roof with large skylights. From the eighties the cinema continued under the name Eurocinema.
After Eurocinema had left and had been vacant for several years, the building was slated to be demolished. When the original facade appeared quite intact, a new purpose was sought. This was found in the function of beer brewery with food hall. Zecc architects reconstructed the building, removing later additions on the inside and outside. The entire interior (cinema halls and suspended ceilings) has been removed, so that again the more or less original open hall (garage company) remained. The facade has been restored to the original image, including the ornaments and details. The thin monumental concrete shell roof with skylights has been restored. Some new industrial-looking parts, including a conservatory and an intermediate floor, have been added, which form a nice contrast with the original architecture. A new metal frame adorns the roof, now with the proud letters MOUT.
Naarderstraat 8, Hilversum