Yamaha Helps Signal The Return Of LocHal To The People Of Tilburg

LocHal1

For 77 years the locomotive repair facility in the Dutch city of Tilburg was a vital part of the Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS, or Dutch Railways) network. Employing hundreds of local people, its 2009 closure had a profound effect on the area. But now the building has been reborn as a major cultural and learning centre, where Yamaha audio systems are helping to drive the train of new innovation forward.

Originally opened in 1932, the impressive 90m by 60m steel and glass building was a busy workplace, playing an important role in local employment. When it closed, rather than demolish it there was a strong desire to ‘return the building to the Tilburg people’. It was decided to use it to form the centrepiece of a contemporary, fashionable new ‘railway zone’ in the city.

“Impressed by the enormous size of the space, the design team realized that it is more than just a building,” says Dennis van der Vleuten, owner of Klundert Audiovisueel, who was commissioned to install AV solutions in the redeveloped facility. “It is a part of the urban fabric of the city that, with its heavy construction and internal ambience that gets lighter the further up you go, would provide a fantastic spatial experience.”

Reopened in 2019 and renamed LocHal (short for Locomotive Hall), it has been converted into a modern, sustainable art and cultural centre, featuring a relocated Tilburg Central Library as well as spaces for meetings, education, hospitality, artistic and cultural development, a cafe and more. Each space has been carefully designed to reflect and complement all of the others, while keeping links to LocHal’s industrial past.

Dennis is currently working with de Bibliotheek Midden-Brabant (which runs the library) and Kunstloc Brabant, a cultural development organisation which assists everyone from school students to professional artists. He has installed a number of audio and video installations through the building, with more in the pipeline.

He has chosen Yamaha audio systems for a number of spaces, thanks to their ease of use and long-term reliability. “My customers want great quality, but they do not want equipment that is complicated to use. It must sound great and straightforward for anyone to get the best from,” he says.

In De Stemmingmakerij, a room for meetings and AV presentations, four Yamaha VXS8 full-range, surface-mount speakers are installed as a stereo system, arranged to seamlessly cover the room, which is wider than it is deep. Powered by an XMV4180 multi-channel amplifier and managed by an MTX3 matrix processor, when a microphone is used the two middle speakers are automatically lowered in volume, maximising gain before feedback.

Future Lab is a room for large, complex AV presentations and one of six themed ‘laboratories’ at LocHal, designed to inspire learning. Here the audio system comprises a pair of Yamaha VXS8 surface-mount loudspeakers, powered by a PX3 power amplifier with system management by another MTX3.

Finally - for now, anyway - the KunstLoc Mesa Mine training room has an audio system comprising a pair of Yamaha VXS5 loudspeakers, powered by an MA2030a mixer amplifier with inputs from a wireless microphone and laptops for presentations.

“The renovation of LocHal was a huge project and it is still ongoing, in terms of further developing the facilities and installing more high quality AV systems to give users the best facilities,” says Dennis. “It gives Tilburg a unique location where people and information come together to learn, do business, research, create, innovate, exhibit and present. It is a place where the future is central, where the latest technology is essential, but without losing sight of its past.”

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