The Rivierstaete building dates from 1973. It quickly became known locally as ‘the monkey house’, because of its piled-up, closed volumes. Demolition and a new construction would have been the easiest option. Because of the great potential of the building, however, the team decided to opt for renovation. MVSA wanted to embrace the original design, retaining its positive elements and making the existing construction visible. MVSA proposed transforming the large, empty monolith into a building that would fit seamlessly into its surroundings and establish a relationship with the neighbourhood.