Steven Otten


Steven Otten graduated from the Delft University of Technology in 2014, with an 8.5 on the fast-track programme of his Master’s in Architecture and having combined his second year of studies with a job as an architect.

“Architecture is in my blood. I’m from a family of builders, and the love of construction has passed down from generation to generation. Take my grandfather, who lived in Kampen. He was a vicar, yet he designed his own chapel, and it’s a modernist gem. The nature of my ‘inheritance’ was brought to me during a medical internship in Ghana, when I was helping to restore a school that had washed away in a flood. I understood then that I was born to be an architect, not a doctor.”

Before joining the firm, Steven was a project architect on a variety of assignments at studio PROTOTYPE. These included a sustainable multi-tenant office building known as The Grove, which he developed in collaboration with Schiphol Real Estate.

He joined Paul de Ruiter Architects in 2020, with the aim of furthering his knowledge of sustainable architecture and circular building design. As he sees it, the key to making design and construction intrinsically more sustainable is collaborative innovation.

“There are lots of ways to make the building industry more sustainable, and they all depend on innovation — nothing changes without it. The transition to a more sustainable world demands both a change in direction and a commitment to open-minded collaboration across disciplines. Both of these are a given at Paul de Ruiter Architects, and this is evident in the final product: sustainable, well-thought-out and visually impressive buildings.”

Guided by his conception of architecture as a synthesis of elements from all art forms, and as a self-confessed bridge-builder, Steven brings his knowledge and skills to bear on every stage of his projects, from concept development to delivery. And his standards are never less than exacting, as evidenced by the precision and detail of his designs.