MAGAZINEBY BY POLIS MAGAZINE POLIS | |PLATFORM PLATFORMFOR FORURBANISM URBANISM
#23.2 #23.1 November June 2012
Re-thinking practice First hand education 04 Boundaries for public participation 08 Top 5 Street art 12 Comp(l)ete Education 14 Seoulutions for Dutch cities 18 WeOwnTheCity 22 At the groundlevel of the city 24 Scattered densities in the city of today 28 UW Mural TU Delft 32
Second hand Cities Urbanism Week reflection 34 Re-scaling infrastructure 38 Spoorzone workshop 42 Vertical cities Asia 44 Venice Biennale 48 Urbanism in new technologies 52 The need for communication 56 Fieldstudy in Rotterdam 58 Shifting territory of Terschelling 62
Editorial The Atlantis committee is very proud to present our second edition, volume 23.2, 'Re-thinking practice'. The theme is a direct quote from the title of the Urbanism week of this year, which was Second Hand Cities: re-thinking practice in times of standstill. This standstill obviously refers to the financial crisis that has hit Europe in 2008. The crisis forces us to evaluate our practice and brings questions to mind such as: What is the role of the citizen these days? What is the best way of engaging with citizens and getting them involved in projects? Should governments and authorities step aside and let civil initiatives take control over their environment and if so, do we, as urban planners, obtain a new task? Our previous edition 23.1 Shifting territories was a huge success. I am very pleased to say that we have sold all our copies and have increased our print run for this edition. An important objective of Atlantis is to be an instrument of communication between students, professionals and the urbanism department. For this reason Atlantis is now on display at the Nai, ARCAM and cASLa. We hope to further explore our cooperation with these institutes and expand our network of urbanists. At Atlantis we like to experiment and continuously improve our magazine. In this edition you will find our specially designed bookmark with a nice agenda full of interesting events. Use the bookmark in the magazine or take it out and put it on your wall. From this edition on our editorial team is strengthened with three new editors. I would like to welcome Todor Kesarovski, Emilia Bruck and Jet van der Hee and I hope that they will contribute to Atlantis for many more editions to come. At the same time we have to say goodbye to Martine Tragter, who found a job at the province of South Holland. Good luck at your new job!
This edition is made in close cooperation with the organisation of the Urbanism Week. I would like to thank the whole Urbanism Week committee, the speakers and all the volunteers for their great effort in organisation this event. The Urbanism Week provided Atlantis with great opportunities for articles and interviews of which you can read the final result in this edition. This issue begins with an introduction by the head of the Urbanism department, Machiel van Dorst, who discusses our practice from a historical perspective. In an interview with John Habraken, we reflect on his idea of the ‘open bouwen’ system and the future of our profession. Tadas Jonauskis and Justina Muliuolyte talk about the relationship between competitions and education. Our previous editor-in-chief, Japser Nijveldt, writes about his research on building typologies in Seoul and what lessons can be learned for the Dutch practice. Beatrice Mariolle addresses the current form of our city, the scattered densities that characterise it and the architectural office aaa outlines their proposal for a temporary urban space on a vacant lot in Paris. Our art page features a new mural, created in our faculty building. This is followed by a reflection on the Urbanism Week. Joan Busquets talks about re-scaling infrastructure projects, using his proposal for the Spoorzone Delft as an example. In a recent workshop by Polis we also discussed the Spoorzone area, so it is nice to see the different proposals. This year’s Vertical Cities Asia competition was jointly won by the two TU Delft teams, with their proposals featured in this edition. In rethinking our practice a great deal of attention is on the role of new media. We review this topic with three contributions. The first, an interview with three of the Urbanism Week speakers, Marthijn Pool, Michiel de Lange and Otto Trienekens. The second, discusses the need for communication in our profession with Amanda Walter and Holly Berkley. The final contribution is by Otto Trienekens is on using GPS tracking in urbanism.
#22.1 April 2011
MAGAZINE BY POLIS | PLATFORM FOR UBANISM
#22.2 Urban Form Keywords: form, density, typologies, design, public space, urban techniques.
#22.1 April 2011
MAGAZINE BY POLIS | PLATFORM FOR UBANISM
#22.3 Urban Economy Keywords: globalization, urban economy, competitiveness, branding, market, role of urbanism, foreign direct investment.
#22.1 April 2011
MAGAZINE BY POLIS | PLATFORM FOR UBANISM
#22.4 Urban Landscape Keywords: landscape, metropolitan, urban-rural, biodiversity, border conditions.
#23.1 Shifting territories Keywords: territory, balance of power, borders, globalization, new towns, third world, mapping, slums.
#23.2 Re-thinking practice Keywords: innovative practice, financial crisis, citizens participation, social media, small scale
Please enjoy this new edition and be critical, Matthijs van Oostrum 2
From the board Committees 2012 In front of you lies the second edition of Atlantis of this board year, and the third edition being made at the moment by an again an expanded Atlantis committee. Nevertheless, there is still room for guest-writers or exchange articles, so don’t hesitate to contact us if you want to share your thoughts. The central section of this magazine is dedicated to the Urbanism Week 2012. This event was the largest of our events this year and we’ve welcomed about 120 students and 60 professionals. We are very happy to see not only students from Delft, but also from Den Bosch, Rotterdam, Eindhoven, Utrecht, Maastricht, Amsterdam, Breda and Deventer. We are proud when we look back at a very diverse week full of interesting workshops and lectures. We hope that this week helped you to prepare for and be part of the upcoming changes in our profession, if you were a visitor. If you were not there, or you missed some lecture then visit the central section of this magazine and the recorded lectures at our site www.urbanismweek.nl. As this copy reaches you, 26 students, one teacher and one employee from Kuiper Compagnons might be on their way to Poland to enjoy our Big Excursion. We are visiting Poznan and Warsaw to see several urban projects related to the changes Poland is currently going through. Topics that will be addressed are the regeneration of soviet residential areas, river embankments in Polish cities, climate change and the influence of large events like the European Football Championship. We will speak with people from Polish universities, the municipalities, designers and residents. Besides these daytime tours we’ll also study the recreational habits of Polish students during the evening, of course. Until December there are still some small events coming up, which will be published on our website as soon as the date and time are set. Among them are an excursion or workshop for the new Q2 students, an exhibition about the Landscape Architecture Minor, an urban dinner and a possible combined lunch lecture with the students of BOSS. If you are interested to join us for the organisation of these events, please let us know. Any ideas for new events are welcome too.
We could not be as visible as we are without the great effort of a lot of active students. In the last 10 months Polis was able to organise a big trip to Vienna, excursions to Antwerp and Amsterdam North, a double lecture on digital urbanism, the Roadshow on sustainable planning, a case study on Spoorzone Delft and of course Urbanism Week 2012. The Polis board wants to thank all the people involved for their great efforts and positive input! We are always looking for enthusiastic people to join. Interested in one of the Polis committees or becoming the new board of 2013? Don’t hesitate to contact us at our Polis office (01west350) or by mail: contact@ polistudelft.nl Polis board. Karlijn Kokhuis – President Manuel Félix Cárdenas – Company Relations Peter van der Graaf - Secretary and Association Relations Victor van Elburg – Treasurer Djawid Tahery - Events Urbanism Week. Kitty Busscher, Charissa Telgt, Nora Prins, Rosa Schouten, Jiya Benni Simone Waaijer, Karlijn Kokhuis, Manuel, Félix Cárdenas Lectures. Lukas Papenborg, Karlijn Kokhuis Education. Kokhuis
We wish you pleasant reading!
Excursions. Verali von Mijenfeldt, Josephine van Lohuizen, Thomas Verhoeven, Peter van der Graaf, Djawid Tahery
Borrel. Victor van Elburg
Manuel Félix Cárdenas, Victor van Elburg, Peter van der Graaf, Karlijn Kokhuis, Djawid Tahery
Atlantis. Matthijs van Oostrum, Andrew Reynolds, Laurien Korst, Tess Stribos, Yongki Kim, Todor Kesarovski, Emilia Bruck, Jet van der Hee
Second hand Cities – first hand education
Machiel van Dorst associate professor at chair of the Urbanism department TU Delft
A lot has been said about the economic crisis in Holland. The construction sector has come to a standstill, giving architects and urbanists a hard time in finding employment. However, the relation between crisis and jobless designers is not a natural one. There are countries (e.g. our neighbours in Belgium) where the crisis has had a milder impact on the building industry. This is because in the Netherlands we tend to limit ourselves to a development, which is in the slipstream of the crisis. For example, new town development, which we were so good at in the Netherlands. Nevertheless, there is still a building assignment, but it is a different one: moulding and reshaping the existing city. This may be perceived as a curious task for planners and designers. The topic was well formulated in the title of the Urbanism Week at the TU Delft in 2012: ‘Second-hand-cities, Rethinking practice in time of standstill’. Now it is not my wish to sketch a future of doom and gloom for urbanists in the Netherlands. It could also be a relief. We may work beyond the new-town assignments and there are new perspectives to discover in national second-hand stores like the Randstad. This was also the goal of the Urbanism Week 2012; so what is this new reality and what kind of knowledge and approaches will help in order to deal with this reality? In the following introduction I will emphasise the utmost essential topic that we have to address in the ‘second-hand-cities’: citizens.
• What was so good about first-hand?
Urban design serves a social goal; creating a sustainable living environment. This implies that we facilitate human behaviour. In designing the new environment we have never gone in the detail of this issue. We have taken the time to design the context to live during the process of designing a physical form. We have paid attention to the infrastructure to facilitate basic needs and the development of the economy, the urban fabric functions and moreover; the creation of an interesting composition in itself. In respect to the users, Le Corbusier did his job just as good (or bad) as Howard. The Unité d’Habitation in Marseille and the garden city Letchworth are both strong compositions, assuming the end users will behave according to plan after being confronted with these excellent designs. It is not my point to criticise great urban designers, but to sketch the normal discourse of urbanism
in the 20th century in which designing the new was the normal mode. The tempo, the quest for quantity and the unknown end users resulted in strong compositions. Form was leading and behaviour was following. “First we shape our buildings and then they shape us” (Churchill, 1942). From this perspective it may be seen as a relief that
starts with understanding the present city. This includes analysing the excising urban composition, the landscape and ecosystem, the economic and the social context and the needs of its citizens. The basic methods have not changed over time. The approach of the end users was formulated in the middle of the 19th century and widely practiced during modernism. After the introduction of the law on medical inspection in the Netherlands in 1865, there was (Churchill, 1942) fast growing attention for the urban context of health (Rosen, the focus has turned away from creating the 1993; Houwaart, 1991). The focus in this age new towards the assignment of the second- was on sewage systems and drinking water. hand cities. It is not only composing with the The importance of basic infrastructure existing built environment it is also turning starts to get an influence on urban design. to and designing with the social environment Afterwards, this influence was growing, but instead of designing for a (fictitious) social the starting point stays the same: the built environment. environment should facilitate the health of the end users. Health is not the broad • Understanding the second hand city definition of the WHO – a state of complete The principal awareness of an urbanist physical, mental and social wellbeing – but
“First we shape our buildings and then they shape us.”
Figure 1. The garden city model of Howard. In the old school ‘building for people’ means locating lifestyles. The city as a zoo instead of the city as an ecosystem. This way of thinking still exist; the end user is played down by calling them housing consumers so they may not interfere in the production process. © Outlooktower. org
is merely the absence of diseases. This perspective has not changed during the ages. Health – as being free from disease - and physical safety is part of building regulations, as leading in designing the new and redesigning the existing city today. It was not until the end of the 1960s in the Netherlands that there was a growing awareness that this approach to design may not be enough. • Designing for people mattered
In that time we started to rethink the practice; if one builds for people, why not include them in the building process? End users became part of the design team, as being the real experts. End users became designers. Unfortunately, this was not the great success that we had hoped for. The motives for this statement could be best explained with an example. In 1974 the first community architecture project in Rotterdam was built - “Simonsterrein”. It was the result of a rebellion of the local inhabitants against the bad living conditions in Rotterdam and the formal plans for large scale restructuring. Houses of a human scale should have made way for modern highrise apartments. The municipality, a housing organisation and the inhabitants were united to come up with a better plan. Inhabitants were supported with means and expertise. The common demands
of the inhabitants were affordable rent and bigger houses. The urban structure came in second place and included communal space with a shared responsibility. The result was a functional design of 480 apartments with an informal character (Galema, 2010). It is a pity that we have had a limited amount of these type of experiments in the Netherlands. There are different reasons for this, but the variation in success is one, and the fact that building according to the old school was still paying off, is the other. The variation in success is due to the limited knowledge there was with community architecture. Simonsterrein is not working today as it was planned by its inhabitants. Inhabitants who got control over their built environment had a higher appraisal for the result, but inhabitants had moved out and the next generation could not read the intensions of their predecessor in the design. The decisions of the first generation do not facilitate the needs of the inhabitants of today.
"If one builds for people, why not include them in the building process?"
• Rethinking practice in time of standstill
This subtitle of the Urbanism Week emphasises the changes of today’s practice. After Simonsterrein and other experiments we have moved back to our daily routine; designing for the unknown. But there are 5
Figure 2. Simon area © Architectuurgids.nl
some interesting examples from the last decades in which the users played a striking role. First of all, we had the development of eco-villages in the Netherlands, sustainable neighbourhoods in practice. The best example is EVA-Lanxmeer in Culemborg. This neighbourhood is internationally recognised as one of the best examples of sustainable design because it addresses climate related issues, ecological quality and social sustainability, like community design and maintenance. The urban design is challenging because of its complex zoning plan of semiprivate, collective and semi-public spaces. The planning process is ground breaking in the way actors came together and new development strategies were implemented. National, regional and local governments are proud with this fine example of a successful plan. If one peels down the success factors of the
project there is no one who stands from the beginning to the end than Marleen Kaptein. She started as a lay-person of the initiative and finally became one of the inhabitants of the project. It is striking to see that it is the non-professional than learns through the process and maintains against all setbacks that delivered us this remarkable project.
sands, IJburg in Amsterdam. The success is in the design but also in the push factor of a tight housing market in Amsterdam and the image built up by the users. The third factor is the beach ‘Blijburg’ that has the atmosphere of a squatted area The beach was removed by formal planning but came back at request of the inhabitants. Blijburg has become an indispensable part of this new neighbourhood. The rethinking of the seventies was marginal in a housing market were everything sales and the majority went back to business as usual. It is the time of standstill today that gives us the opportunity to move towards a more diverse and quality oriented market. In this context we have to take users’ needs into further account than health and physical safety. Professionals need to learn to implement plans like Simonsterrein, EVA-Lanxmeer and the ostensible detail of Blijburg in IJburg.
´The rethinking of the seventies was marginal in the housing market where everything sales and the majority went back to business as usually. It is this time of standstill of today that gives us the opportunity to move to a more diverse and quality oriented market.´
The success here is not because of the planning professionals; in fact, it is despite of them. A different example is the last formal neighbourhood that is planned on empty
• …and move on again
Getting form the old school to a new practice is more than changing a mind-set. The urbanist still has to deliver her or his craftsmanship in planning and design. One should know how to act in a multiactor setting and how to work with a complex reality of a social and physical environment in a changing context that exists today. There will be a new division of roles in the development process; it may be a group of inhabitants or a building community that takes the lead in a project. Thus, the urbanist of the new school has to cope with the actor that was formally known as the ‘end user’ in a different way. The lessons from the seventies definitely have to be learned. Inhabitants have to be taken seriously; they even may be
in charge in a design process but they are not the experts in most aspects. The urbanist may still guide the historical context towards a sustainable (and durable) future of a certain area. But more important we are intent to fail again without having any knowledge on the position and perception of the endless varieties of users. So the handbook of the urbanist beyond crisis may be the following: - You may not be in charge of a plan, but you may be the only actor that has a grip on the complexity of it; - From this perspective you may be responsible for the future of ta plan, while including the inhabitants influence in the design process. This balance is a direct appeal on an urbanist ethics; - One cannot include users (groups) without knowledge on needs, behaviour and cognition of individuals and users groups. I am glad that the Urbanism Week 2012 open-ups the field of urbanism and is willing to add new dimensions. In this way a crisis is a blessing in disguise. We will not be doing a total different job and we will not repeat mistakes form the past but times are certainly changing. In this same period the departments of Urbanism in The Netherlands (from Universities and Academies) are doing research on the future within the field, as it is perceived by practices and the implications that may have on our education. Just as the urbanist will hang on to his or her experience and at the same time adapts to the new context, education will teach students a craftsmanship and will adjust to curriculum to handle a changing practice. So I am looking forward to it. Galema, W. (2010) Simonsterrein, monument van aktivisitiese stedenbouw. Rotterdam: AIR Rosen, G. (1993) A History of public health. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Houwaart, E. (1991) De Hygiënisten. Artsen. Staat en volksgezondheid in Nederland 1840-1890. Groningen: Historische Uitgeverij Groningen.
Figure 3. EVA Lanxmeer Masterplan © copijn.nl
Figure 4. EVA Lanxmeer © Architectuurgids.nl
Setting the boundaries for public participation
Interview with John Habraken
John Habraken Author of Palladio’s children Former Professor TU Delft
Participation of citizens in the design and construction of our built environment
Berkel en Rodenrijs
is a topic that attracted much attention in recent debates. Demand for social
Plan Westpolder Bolwerk
sustainability, new technologies combined with an on-going crisis direct us towards a different approach for our urban discipline. Much of what is said in recent years
however, is not new. John Habraken is the initiator of the “Open Bouwen” or “Open
2 primary schools
Building” approach which already put forward many similar ideas in the 1960s.
Together with John Habraken I consider his ideas in relation to some contemporary issues in urban design and planning.
Urban design and coordinating architect: Henk Reijenga
Could you briefly explain your idea of “Open Bouwen”?
The basic concept is that a built environment can only be healthy if their physical environment is responsive to their action; that they are participants in that environment’s creation and maintenance. It is the job of architects and urbanist to make this possible. In the time of modernism, after the war, large urban projects were executed in a top down and uniform manner resulting in the inevitable outcome of mass production. This practice led to a system of rules and regulations that served the professional world and made their role more prominent. Of course people love to be able to shape and equip their dwellings to their own preferences, but more importantly, this is a precondition for a healthy urban fabric. The house, or better a residential unit, is a living cell within a living organism that we call the built environment.
- Schippers architecten, Den Haag - Architectenbureau Van Manen, Noordwijk - Bureau voor Architectuur en Stedenbouw Henk Reijenga, Voorburg - PBV architecten, Wassenaar The urban design is characteristic for its variation of recognisable and
Is it possible to say that this closely correlates with the metabolism approach?
well-designed urban spaces. These
Yes, you could say that. But in those days we only instinctively felt this was an essential issue. The most important thing is to understand who decides what in the built environment. If you take any old village or city, you find that people always had the power to decide over their own house. There is nothing new about this idea. Unfortunately, for complex reasons that selfevident empowerment was lost in the last century.
elements create an interesting and various pattern of public spaces. The parking problem is solved in a way prevent parking along the streets, city moats and canals. The plan was divided in 3 sub-
Has modernism taken us by surprise?
plans of 500 houses, divided
I think you could say it like that. The Modern movement brought forth the dominance of professionalism. There is an important difference between saying that we, architects and urban planners, design the city, or saying that the city is a living organism that we can help to blossom. We need to reconsider our professional role.
by 3 architects who designed different housing types which, instead of been put together in a neighbourhood, were mixed through the whole project.
In current practice we see a revival of neotraditionalism and a lot of attention for
The architects could choose out
diversity in the streetscape. Is this an answer to that surprise?
of 5 sorts of bricks and 3 types of
It is true that we need to find new forms for our buildings and cities. If you get an assignment to build a few hundred houses it is a very legitimate question to ask yourself how to prevent uniformity. There are very good examples of how you could do this like the project Berkel en Rodenrijs. This project produced an environment of delightful variety, but at the same time maintained coherence.
tiles for the designs, this way there
were variations on the scale of the houses, but at the same time created a neighbourhood with coherence.
In your own “Open Bouwen” theory, you explain the separation of the “base building” from its interior “fit-out”. Is this true both for urban systems as much as for architectural systems?
Yes, we talk about different levels of intervention and control: the buildings - both free standing houses as base buildings - form the infill of the urban structure which they share. In the same way as the fit-out is the infill of the base building and of the free standing house as well. In that way, each dwelling unit is individually adaptable. By their exterior design both free standing houses and base buildings contribute to the shared urban environment, while maintaining freedom on the inside. One country with a huge production of uniform apartment buildings is China. Do you foresee a problem? Figure 1. Berkel en Rodenrijs masterplan © H. Reijenga
Figure 2. Impression Berkel en Rodenrijs, alongside Canal © H. Reijenga
Figure 3. Impression Berkel en Rodenrijs, view of square © H. Reijenga
The situation in China seems like that in Europe after the Second World War. Mass production of shelter makes short term thinking prevail. This should not be a long term problem as long as inhabitants own and control their units. Their ability to adapt their units to new conditions and demands is an essential condition for a sustainable environment. The long term challenge is how we can continuously improve our existing building stock instead of focusing on new projects only. In Japan the concern for a sustainable environment led to some interesting developments. The Japanese government released a law in December 2009 that encourages investment in buildings that can live up to 200 years. This law comes from the `Open Bouwen` ideas. It spells out a broad set of technical demands that a building must meet to qualify for an important tax reduction. You can conceive a building as a compilation of different subsystems, and, ideally, subsystems with a shorter use life should be replaceable without disturbing other systems. Already some 200,000 projects have been constructed under this new law. In addition to this law, we see the emergence of the first dedicated “Fit-out companies”, that can remove an existing apartment unit and replace it with another within a month. Such a company can also fit out a new base building project. Potentially, there is an enormous market. New laws to encourage long term life for buildings and to stimulate a new “fit9
So it is the regulations that prevent an `Open Bouwen` approach?
The regulations are the product of a topdown professional way of working. The challenge is to stimulate a bottom up process. The second challenge is the creation of an Fit-out industry. This is technically not very difficult, since we already have all the hardware available. It is a matter of logistics and management that demands careful development but is within the state of the art. What could be the role of citizens participation?
Figure 4. NEXT21, Japan ÂŠ Hong Kong university
out industryâ€? should also be issued in the Netherlands, but until now there are no signs for anything in that direction. There is almost complete ignorance about a possible strategy. Let alone a political will to change. It is perhaps not surprising that this law has been adopted in Japan, since Japan features one of the first buildings to fully incorporate the `Open Bouwen` system, NEXT21.
NEXT21 was an important step. There had been earlier initiatives with the `Open Bouwen` approach, but NEXT21 got the attention from the government. The government got inspired and began to support this kind of projects. This law is yet another step forward in that process. But you should note that the architects of the Next21 project took their client to the Netherlands where I showed them, among other things, the Molenvliet project by Frans van der Werf which was the first fully integrated Open Building project ever, and they decided to follow that example. Almere Oosterwolde is a project which also features people building their own house. Is the project in coherence with the `Open Bouwen` approach?
What happens in Almere is very interesting. They work to simplify the process for people who want to build their own house. The problem is that they get involved in a very complicated process from design to construction. Architects and planners know 10
how to deal with all the rules, regulations, contractors, subcontractors and permits but for normal people it is very difficult to understand and manage that process and it discourages them from starting their own project. In Japan there are industries that deliberately take away all these barriers, and make it is possible for people to be in control of the construction of their own house. The largest of these industries existed in Japan already before the introduction of computers. They had worked out a clever prefab structure that could hold together already familiar ways of building and subsystems. If you want to construct your own house you can contact them and they steer you to an architect in your neighbourhood who knows their system. The price of your design is calculated the same day. When the design is decided upon you are invited to a big showroom where they assist you to select all the different parts of your house, until the very last detail. Next they put to work a builder in your neighbourhood who is familiar with their system to erect the house. In this way you have only one party to deal with, a guaranteed price and a known quality. Their innovation is not the technical system but the fact that they take over all the management problems for you and help you make your decisions. They construct about 60.000 houses per year, which is more than the whole Dutch production combined.
People make a lot of fuss about citizens participation nowadays, but architects and urban planners remain in control of the process and the project. They refuse to talk about the delegation of decision power. This problem goes back to the housing law of 1901. That law was entirely paternalistic and it eliminated the user from the decision making process. Over the last century the system got more and more complicated. Now we want to change this system and that is not easy. Is the economic crisis an opportunity in this case?
I hope it is. Architects and planners like to talk about new buildings, but it is much more important to talk about the existing stock of buildings. Is our education suited for designing a built environment in which people have control over the their own house?
Generally speaking, the studio system that architecture schools follow is entirely focussed on the individual designerâ€™s performance. In reality a building is the result of cooperation. Not only within an office, but also between offices. Graduate students lack the skills needed to deal with a shared typology, patterns, and systems, which should be the basis of an urban design. Within a given urban structure and shared agreements there is space for individual expression. Students are generally judged on their final design but not on the skills they learned. Skills are usually kept implicit. Of course a final design should be judged but one criterion should also be what space it creates for other designers to act in it and how such action can be coordinated.
Figure 5. Almere Oosterwolde © Architectuur.org
Your `Open Bouwen` approach seems to me like a possible
Could you conclude why this approach is still not adopted in
solution for the improvement of slums?
the European context?
You say slums, but it is simply people taking own initiative to build their house. In many of the world’s mega cities the majority of the housing stock is built in this informal way. What politicians tend to call slums are not degenerate neighbourhoods, they are new ways of building cities. Professionals and politicians can help by giving people control and land ownership, so they can be legal citizens and apply for civic functions. They also need access to materials, to be able to construct their own house. This reminds me of a big cement company in Mexico that was hit by a severe recession in the building industry. They expected their sales to plummet, but it remained much more stable, due to the huge amount of cement that was bought by individual people, one bag at a time, for the construction of their own house. This is how they discovered the informal market. They stopped making commercial advertisements and started developing information for local people to help them build their own house.
Our professional ideology prevents us from a different approach. Our education and our theories still follow the role model set by Palladio. There is no knowledge of alternatives. For most architects and planners moving away from current habits of practice makes them fear to lose their bearings, and that is understandable. Most importantly, there is no recognition of the fact that cooperation is an essential ingredient for making a healthy built environment. The way we interact among designers has to do with the various levels of intervention found in the built environment: such as urban design, building, and interior fit-out, for instance. In that hierarchical framework we relate horizontally with designers working on the same level and vertically between designers operating on different levels. On each level we work for lay people, our clients, who have decision making power. Much of that already works in practice of course because the built environment demands it, but our ideology denies that reality: our ideal for good architecture is to have full central control on all levels. Therefore our schools do not teach how to interact among designers and how to distribute design control in an efficient way. There is a general lack of interest in discussing methods of working together. Only when the pain of not-changing is going to be bigger than the pain of changing, new approaches will be adopted. And perhaps a recession is an opportunity to escape our denial of reality. The great ideas of modernism were also achieved in the times of 1930s crisis. Only then people have time to think and reflect.
Can we learn something from the informal construction in those countries?
Labour is really cheap there, so it is difficult to compare. But, the philosophy that people make their own decisions could remain the same. The main reason why we call these ‘slums’ informal, is because there was no professional involved in the design or construction. We condemn these places because they do not conform to our rules, but for millennia complex built environments have lived where lay people and professionals worked together. The so called ‘informal sector’ is the continuation of that tradition and we can learn from it what our role can be to help create and cultivate a healthy built environment.
Matthijs van Oostrum
Street art Second-hand facade design
TOP 5 Todor Kesarovski Editor Atlantis MSc 1 student
Street art is an intriguing urban phenomenon which has gained serious popularity in the recent decades. While the aesthetic quality of the street art can be rather controversial, in many cases street art has reflected positively on the quality of the urban environment. Some signs of the modern graffiti and street art movements can be found in 1960s, but the art came to prominence in the 1980s, with some remarkable interventions such as the Berlin Wall Graffiti and the Heidelberg projects. Now, street art has obtained a real popularity due to the work of the British artist Bansky, who has inspired a considerable number of young creative people. The major idea behind the street art movement is the opportunity to question the existing urban environment in an alternative fashion. Most commonly, street artists aim to connect with the ordinary people by engaging with social and political themes in their work. With this aim, it is hard to imagine a more suitable exhibition place than the public spaces within cities. In the following article, some of the most famous examples of street art worldwide are presented. Although the aesthetic quality of these projects could be questioned, their visual impact on the urban environment is very significant.
Berlin Wall Graffiti Project (Berlin, Germany) It is impossible to review the artworks within the urban landscape and not mention the Berlin Wall Graffiti Project. The Berlin Wall is considered as one of the largest canvas in the world. The initial function of the wall, to act as a physical barrier between East and West Berlin provoked serious social tensions between the inhabitants in the city. This has made the location a perfect spot for people to express their opinions, especially on their preferences and dislikes. Painting graffiti on the wall became popular for artists from all over the world and the graffiti also attracted many tourists. Unfortunately, much of the artwork was not claimed by the artists and remains anonymous. The original idea of the project was to be public and the wall was open to everyone. There were no limitations regarding who could execute paintings and what could be addressed by the artists as their expressions on the wall. Over the past 30 years, since the collection of artwork was started much of the controversial graffiti has been removed from the wall. In some areas where sections of the wall remain, painting is still allowed but in general the graffiti along the wall is protected and painting
Figure 1. Berlin Wall © www.dalismo.com
over the existing works is prohibited today. For further information: www. dailysoft.com/berlinwall/art/index.htm
Heidelberg Project (Detroit, USA) One of the most remarkable urban street art exhibitions worldwide is the Heidelberg Project. It takes place in the city of Detroit and the project is without comparison. It was created in 1986 by the artist Tyree Guyton and his grandfather – Sam Mackey in an east side neighbourhood of Detroit, very closely located to the historical African – American area of the city. The original idea of Guyton was to paint a series of houses on Detroit’s Heidelberg Street as a political protest. Over the years, the project has evolved to become a symbolic landmark for the whole city of Detroit, transforming a forbidding inner-city neighbourhood where people were afraid to walk, even in the daytime, into an area now where neighbours take pride and where the many visitors are welcomed. Guyton has worked on the Heidelberg Project daily with inhabitants and children from the neighbourhood engaging the local community in the work process. In 2011, the project marked its 25th anniversary and continues to be used as an inspiration for many creative works around the world today. For further information: www.heidelberg.org Figure 2. House in Detroit © www.globalsiteplans.com
Santa Maria Favela (Rio De Janeiro, Brazil) A notable example of a street art project is the Favela Painting in Santa Maria, one of the largest slums in Rio de Janeiro. This project is based on the great idea of transforming the ‘ugly’ urban space of a favela in to an artistic and creative environment. The initial concept for the project was conceived by two Dutch artists - Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn, who visited the favela in 2005 and stated that ‘art seems to be forgotten in this place’. Therefore, they decided to take care of the favela and introduced the idea of painting the buildings. By involving the local young population, and the samba schools with their traditional colours, the project has been strongly supported and gained fame around the world. The result are truly amazing, more than 7000 square meters on the buildings of Santa Maria are now painted in many colours and the favela has become not only a meeting point for art but also a great tourist destination. Moreover, the project is perceived as an inspirational art landmark in Brazil with a very positive reflection on the local community. For further information: www. favelapainting.com/santa-marta Figure 3. Santa Marta Favela © thingstodo.viator.com
Street art capital of Norway (Bergen) During the new century the public space of Bergen, Norway, has been transformed in a hotspot for street art. The inspiration for this has come with the visit of the famous artist Banksy in 2000. His work around the world has inspired many young creative people to express themselves in the public space in the city through street art. One of these inspired artists is Dolk, who has become the most famous contributor to Norwegian alternative art. Dolk’s creations which are appreciated by the local citizens can be seen in several places around Bergen. The city council decided to preserve his work ‘Spray’ with protective glass in 2009. Bergen has been inspired by street art in the last decade and this has reflected on the local government policies. In 2011, the city released a plan for encouraging and integrating street art in the urban landscape. The ambition of the city is to allow young artists to express their creations in order to establish Bergen as the street art capital of Norway and Scandinavia. Figure 4. Farm shed with graffiti © www.fatcap.com
Dafen Art Village (Shenzhen, China) The case of Dafen Village, in Shenzhen China, differs from the aforementioned examples. The district has been developed as commercial area with many shops selling art products in 1990s. Originally, the artists in the Dafen were specialised in producing copies of paintings - clients supplied the image and painters reproduced them by hand, often in large quantities. In time, the district has become more famous and attracted new artists who have moved in the area. Today, the streets of Dafen look like a massive atelier where artists are both creating and selling their artwork. The cityscape of the art village has changed drastically since the year 2000, when the local government released a plan for reconstructing and enhancing the area in order to transform it into a cultural landmark on international scale. Various interventions have taken place including the repainting of the existing buildings and display of sculptural works in the urban space. All of these projects create the fascinating atmosphere of Dafen, an urban area completely captured by art. Figure 5. Dafen Art village © Matthijs van Oostrum
competitions linking education and practice
Tadas Jonauskis, Justina Muliuolyte Founders of design and research team Public Urbanism Personal Architecture pu-pa.eu
Combining study, jobs and daily life is challenging enough for most students.
Tips and tricks for competitions
Justina Mulioloyte and Tadas Jonauskis managed to graduate cum laude at TU Delft
1. Be explicit about your own
in 2010, while participating in several design competitions. Last year they won the
goal / attitude: serious or ideas
Europan11 with their design of ‘Multitalented city’.
In a lecture they plead for competitions as the link between education and practice.
2. In ideas competition - think of
Atlantis attended their lecture, the debate afterwards and interviewed them on their
super creative concept
experience in education and practice.
3. In serious competition understand the context Visit territory Read the brief carefully Answer to all question from the
Justina and Tadas obtained their Bachelor of Architecture at Vilnius Gedimino Technical University. In 2008 they came from Lithuania to the Netherlands for their master studies in Urbanism at TU Delft. During (and after) their studies they expanded their curriculum vitae by participating in various design competitions. By analysing their competition entries different approaches can be detected. Their first architectural competition was an initial attempt to apply their academic knowledge and ideas in a design competition. After that they took part in another competition with the clear idea of having fun and experimenting with new design techniques. While graduating they were able to apply their knowledge in two design contests. The first one was a project regarding revitalization of the waterfront in Kaunas, Lithuania. This work was based on the graduation project of Justina (public space and infrastructure strategy for Kaunas city). The second one concerned the transformation of a Lithuanica industrial site. They developed the project together with Karres en Brands urbanism office. This
collaboration provided Justina and Tadas a valuable opportunity to gain experience in workshops and networking, teaching them how to develop and adjust their ideas in a larger working team. By participating in design contests during their university days, they occasionally won a ‘barbecue set’ and minor fame. But why participate then?
4. In both cases: proposal has to be short and clear Concept should be explained in one sentence 5. Work on graphics 6. Make a “selling” image
Europan11 competition • Why combine study and competition?
Tadas and Justina participated in
In their lecture Justina and Tadas state that competitions are the essential link between education and practice. They come up with five propositions that underline this statement. The first proposition, for developing skills that you need for professional life. By working on competition projects you are confronted with themes that you will not easily encounter in student projects. One is, for example, supposed to be able to communicate design ideas to non-designers. This skill is, of course, essential in professional life, whereas it seems to be under-exposed to students in the education process. The second proposition, go through all the phases of a project: research, concept, working out of a plan, drawings and presentation. The significance of all stages
the Europan11, and were one of
"By participating in design contests during their college days, they occasionally won a ‘barbecue set’ .."
the winners out of 1826 entries. The aim of the competition was to look for a new architecture for sustainable cities. They have developed the project 'Multitalented city', a transformation of the Moulin de la Housse campus in Reims, France. The link with 'Secondhand cities' can be seen in the use of the memory of the old campus. The design of 'Multitalented city' also provides a feasible planning, which is one of its unique selling points, as is said by Tadas. You can find a full report on their proposal for the Europan11 competition can be red in Atlantis #22.4 Urban Landscape.
Figure 1. Moulin de la Housse campus © Muliolyte and Jonauskis
during the project development is something that every professional should be aware of. By taking part in competitions one has the opportunity to organise and structure her own ideas in a proper manner. This is related to the following proposition: The third proposition, learning to see overview, to conclude and manage time. Design competitions are always under a certain timepressure. Competitions are mainly realized in spare time, so you learn to manage a design project better. The fourth proposition, dealing with a real assignment. Dealing with reality, having a relevant question and (more or less) a real client, is inspiring to put the academic knowledge gained in the university in a workable framework. One is able to reflect on the theoretical and methodological approaches utilized in science and apply them in practice. The fifth proposition, adding extra to your CV and portfolio. By participating in competitions one is able to upgrade his curriculum vitae and portfolio, which is extremely helpful for job applications.
• Are competitions really useful?
Participating in competitions is one thing, but being successful in it is another. Justina and Tadas came up with a few tips and tricks (see box 1) which could guide students through a competition.
Further in the discussion the general notion that competitions could be seen as the essential bridge between the academic (student) projects and practical (professional) work was reinforced. Justina and
The lecture of Justina and Tadas was followed by a very fruitful discussion concerning the advantages and the disadvantages of participating in design competitions. During the debate the utilization of competitions in the professional life was seriously questioned with the statement that, “one could better find clients on the street then by engaging in competitions”. The young Lithuanian urbanists rejected this statement. Their major counter argument was that the initial goals of taking part in competitions are to learn, experiment and gain practical experience instead of getting a job. In addition, Tadas and Justina proved that competitions are also useful for their professional life e.g. by winning the Europan11 they have received a chance to continue the work on their concept for ‘Multitalented city’ (see box 2) and supervise the project development it in order to finalize it. Another precious quality that could be obtained by participating in different design contests seems to be the building of self-confidence as young professional.
“One could better find clients on the street then by engaging in competitions.”
Tadas stated that competition projects are really different from the design work made in the university. According to Tadas, during the development of university projects, students try to solve everything and pay lots of attention to the reasoning behind the proposed interventions. On the other hand, while taking part in competition we are put in an abstract situation without considering in-depth the political, technical aspects and this provides designers a great chance to experiment and unleash their creativity: ´let just do it; let just try it' The young professional stated that the combination of these two approaches is necessary in order to develop good projects. Therefore, both education in the university and practical knowledge gained in competitions tend to be essential in one’s professional career. Another important issue that was touched upon during the debate was concerning the copyright of the projects involved in a certain
However, this is only the start and both young professionals tend to be ‘hungry’ for work. They combine their office occupation with work on their Europan project during their ‘free’ time (e.g. evenings and weekends). This clearly shows the ambition that they possess for personal development. Although already intensively involved in professional projects it seems that Justina and Tadas have not forgotten their studies in TU Delft. On the contrary, they highly appreciate the knowledge regarding executing research that they have acquired during their studies. However, they emphasize that it is important to be selective while doing research. The young designers are also fully aware that in order to earn professional prosperity they should combine the research that they have performed with their current work. According to them, the major abilities gained by doing research
Figure 2. Birds-eye impression Moulin de la Housse campus © Muliolyte and Jonauskis
competition. On a question raised by the public: 'Are you not afraid that your ideas exposed during a contest could be adopted by the organisers without receiving credit for this?' Justina and Tadas continued to reply with a positive attitude. They argued that the major idea behind urbanism as a science and the practical projects is to share concepts and experience with others. Thus, in case that somebody utilizes their concept or idea this would rather flatter than offend them. 'More than everything else designers would like to see their ideas realised!' they stated. • And now?
After winning the Europan, getting a real commission is not easy, as was the case of ‘Multitalented city’. The winner of a site is chosen by an international jury, but all the involved local parties (the ‘real clients’) are only engaged afterwards. That means a slow start but as we are speaking the project ‘Multitalented City’ in Reims is getting more attention. Recently, they have gained serious fame in their home country Lithuania. By now their hard work during the last few years seems to pay off and today they enjoy the positive results. 16
are: firstly, to ask the correct questions, secondly, to make clear conclusions and thirdly, to know where to find certain information and data. In fact, the qualities of being selective and efficient while undertaking research have changed the main working approach of Justina and Tadas who have started to spend more time on their concepts during the project development and less time to the image production in their recent work. To conclude, the successful story of these two young urbanists seems to be a good example of how students can obtain professional skills while they are studying. Justina and Tadas found their own way by participating in various competitions and this approach looks to be effective for them. However, as they stated by themselves: 'the key is in the self-learning, self-motivation and self-discipline' This means that everybody can find there own way of developing professional skills, but the aforementioned qualities are essential for achieving them according to our Lithuanian respondents. Laurien Korst and Todor Kesarovski
What does Second Hand City means to you and how did Urbanism Week change your ideas?
Peter van Schie
Urbanist – Visionair
Edwin Prins Office
Postmasters of Berlage, 1st Year
Peace in Design, S.C.A.
Municipality of Breda
From the Netherlands
From the Netherlands
From the Netherlands
If we take a look at the conference
During this conference two
In fact, I am not really sure what
Looking at history cities have
as a whole Thursday (27.09),
major topics were brought on
second hand city really means.
always gone through various
addressed the issues of second
the stage. First, lots of ideas
In my opinion it should be either
changes – physical, demographic,
hand cities in a better manner
and notions about how small
first or third hand cities. Cities
lifestyle etc. Everything in urban
because second hand cities are
scale interventions could be
are utilized over and over again
space is subject of a constant
about people. People have been
implemented in urban space
through the years. Therefore, it
process of transformation.
forgotten for very long time in our
and how they could enhance
could not be stated that there are
Moreover, the image, the face and
plans. We as urbanists are busy
the quality of cities. And second,
first, second or third hand cities.
the concept of cities also seem
with structuring, organising and
what could be the possibilities
The challenge in front of the
to change. We have seen that the
managing the urban areas but
and necessities for creating
contemporary cities is to adapt to
importance and the scale of cities
now we see a change. People all
new alliances between different
changes. In this sense an essential
have grown up throughout time
around the world want to plan,
kinds of people. Therefore, it
quality that cities should possess
from local to global. Nowadays
design and initiate interventions
was interesting to see what
is flexibility. And this is something
we have all of these global cities
instead of waiting for the
governmental authorities, on the
that was also addressed during
such as Barcelona and Amsterdam
government or somebody else to
one hand, and the professionals,
which were discussed on the
do this. The important message
on the other, think about this
It is always nice to hear a lot of
conference. These are different
which was touched upon this
issue. Today we can see that
lectures which address similar
types of cities and they need
conference is that we should
professionals should be multi-
problems. However, I found
make a step back and return to the
discipline and collaborate with
the lecture of Joan Busquets
With the formation of new urban
bottom, to the people because we
diverse types of actors in order to
“Changing times; Spoorzone
structures the challenges in front
are trained to build environments
create successful alliances.
Delft” (28.09) the best. It revealed
of the urban professionals are
for people and we have forgotten
We cannot just build up new
more practical solutions whereas
also changing. These cities have
cities so we should deal with the
the other speakers had rather a
global issues such as energy
The economic crisis gives us a
problems that are already in the
theoretical and academic focus.
consumption. Today people have
great opportunity to rethink what
existing cities. In order to do so,
Practice is the most important
different lifestyle which consumes
is urbanism about. And the basic
we should be aware that being
because after certain interventions
much more energy than in the
concern of urbanism are people.
only a designer is not going to be
in urban space are implemented
past. Therefore, professionals
Therefore, the challenge in front
sufficient. Therefore, we should
we rather recognized clearer the
should be more innovative and
of us is to return to the basics and
adopt new roles for ourselves and
practical means of the project and
adaptive in finding solutions to
rethink why we are urbanists. As
collaborate with different people
not the theory behind it.
control the flows of energy. This
for the students the challenge is
including citizens, architects,
problem is essential in respect
to be creative. They should not
to sustainability and it is a real
become grey and think about the
challenge for the contemporary
money but rather to search for an
Seoulutions for Dutch Cities Towards a dynamic urbanism
Bart Reuser & Jasper Nijveldt Next Architects www.nextarchitects.com
The urban development of Seoul is completely opposite to that of the Netherlands. Where the Netherlands excels in defining restrictions, the planning system in Seoul is modest, more adaptive and stimulating. It is a dynamic system that provides a wealth of examples and inspiration, especially in light of the discussion surrounding the new Dutch environmental law (Omgevingswet), which aims to achieve simplification, flexibility and acceleration. The international debate discusses the contrast between the ‘Conditioned City’ and ‘City of Flux’. The ‘Conditioned City’, which refers to mostly Western and particularly European cities, is characterized by a comprehensive planning system that produces a controlled set of coherent urban structures. The contrasting ‘City of Flux’, often an Asian city, attempts through a set of guiding rules and incentives, to bring a reasonable ratio between development and unforeseen opportunities. Seoul is such a city; seemingly chaotic and disorganized, but in reality is alive with a wealth of initiatives. • Continuous transformation
• Dynamic system
The development of Seoul as a metropolis is considerably irregular. The erratic emergence of new influences, ideas and plans has resulted in a diverse array of neighbourhoods, ranging from the monotonous to the dynamic. What is most striking on first visit to Seoul is the vast quantity of apartment buildings occupying the city. However, what is much less noticeable are the neighbourhoods that have escaped the large scale replacement and demolition. These surviving low-rise neighbourhoods have transformed gradually into vital urban environments, and continue to undergo reinvention.
Surprisingly small neighbourhoods such as Hongdae, despite the continuous transformations and vast functional mix, still fall under the category ‘residential’. The Korean, Euclidian based, planning system reflects a way of thinking that is alien to the planning practice in the Netherlands. In the Korean system the owner of the house is regarded as an entrepreneur, who should have the opportunity to transform and develop his own property. This greatly contrasts with the Dutch attitude towards a resident - as a consumer that is in need of protection.
"In the Korean system the owner of the house is regarded as an entrepreneur, who should have the opportunity to transform and develop his own property."
The neighbourhood of Hongdae is a prime example of this dynamic transformation. Originally Hongdae existed as a spacious, introverted villa district with walled courtyards, where only in the last few decades it has transformed considerably, in parts almost turning itself inside out. Hongdae flourished in the seventies under the influence of the expansion of Hongik Art University with the surge of artists moving to the neighbourhood. This resulted in the formation of a new creative base, one which appeared to be continuously renewing itself. Today Hongdae similarly attracts residents with such creative interests, such as designers, illustrators and theatre groups. Ultimately, the district has become a display of the ongoing process of transformation that occurs within the area .
The Korean planning system therefore holds interesting lessons (or “Seoulutions”) for Dutch cities to develop a more dynamic urban environment. Instead of a hierarchical system of plans that exceed each other in scale, it has three important control mechanisms: zoning, building and bonus regulations. All three have influence on the transformation and density of the city, where the changing of the variables of restriction and relaxation control the urban environment. It is a dynamic system where a set of rules not only dictate what is restricted, but also what is possible, and even desirable. The first organization mechanism, zoning, operates as a planning tool. It forms the basis for an overall area classification by function, with categories such as Residential, Commercial, Industrial and Green. Within the residential category there are various
Figure 1. Transformation between 2009 and 2011
Figure 2. From basement to club. The basement provided a great opportunity for additional floor space without being included in the FSI calculations, leading to large-scale expansions of underground parking floors. However, the definition of what was considered an â€˜undergroundâ€™ space was a constant point of discussion. To resolve this, a ratio between the above and underground floors was introduced. Before 1985, each room that was a 1/3 of the room height or more above the ground needed to be included in the calculations. Afterwards the figure was halved. Attempts to reduce the effect of the rule led to more spaces being deepened. By making deeper spaces, the ratio changed with high underground spaces as a result. The resulting high ceilinged underground rooms today serve as great locations for clubs and workshops. This shows that rules have become almost unnoticed design tools that continuously seek a balance between freedom and constraint.
subdivisions. Each of these categories focuses on a particular function, but other functions are not excluded per definition. The result is that there is little that prevents a residential area in the category of “mixed housing” from transforming into a commercial area with functional diversity (fig. 1).
in building developments rather than to simply dictate the limitations. The bonus system invites the individual to increase the quality and be rewarded with quantity, therefore optimizing the value of their real estate (fig 4.). It works as a catalyst
• Dutch planning mentality
In the Netherlands we have become accustomed to our present planning system and the accompanying instrumentation - a method that brings forth much good, yet has numerous limitations. The Dutch system imposes a wellintentioned approach towards risk reduction and legal protection, but we create our own limitations in our aspiration for certainty. We excel at protecting our space and regulating the meaning of place, but fail to deploy our instruments dynamically. We struggle to accept the dynamic nature of the city and its continuously changing usage, and to correctly steer the development process with anticipation of future changes, whilst remaining open to surprise.
"The Dutch system imposes a wellintentioned approach towards risk reduction and legal protection, but we create our own limitations in our aspiration for certainty."
Besides zoning, two other control mechanisms are equally as important, namely building and bonus regulations. Building regulations define the boundaries, which often have intriguing spatial effects (fig. 2). This illustrates the invisible but vital relationship between regulation and space. The transformation is further guided and induced by a clever system of bonus rules (fig. 3). This form of control, similar to New York’s incentive-based planning, attempts to inspire new potential
for dynamic developments. The result is a very diverse urban field with both large urban developments and small architectural transformations. The transition from private to public, from residential area to commercial centre and from low to high densities, is thus an ongoing process.
2 plots + 10% 3-4 plots + 15% > 4 plots +20% Gezamenlijke ontwikkeling
Rule: a + (a*p*b)
2 plots + 10% 3-4 plots + 15% > 4 plots +20%
2 plots + 10% 3-4 plots + 15% > 4 plots +20%
Public top floor + 10%
a= standard ratio Publieke ruimte p = % groundfloor to public space b= % bonus = 50% forRegel: pilotis type 120% for open typea + (a * p * b)
Publieke ruimte Publieke bovenste verdieping + 10%
Regel: a + (a * p * b)
Publieke bovenste verdieping + 10%
a= Standaard ratio
p =% % of grondvloer example: Plot with ratio 3 has 10 plot for geven aan a=standard Standaard ratio publieke ruimte = % grondvloer geven public space,p with a pilotis type. Theaan extra floor space (bonus) b= % bonus = 50% voor pilotis type publieke ruimte becomes: 120% voor open type b= % *bonus voor pilotis type 3 + (3 * 10% 50%)==50% 3.15 120% voor open type + 5% vb. Plot met standaard ratio 3 wil 10% vb. Plot met standaard ratio 3 wilvan 10%de plot voor publieke ruimte bestemmen onder de arkade. Het extra van de plot voor publieke ruimte vloer oppervlak (bonus) wordt dan: bestemmen onder de arkade. Het extra vloer oppervlak (bonus) wordt dan: 3 + (3 * 10% * 50%) = 3.15 3 + (3 * 10% * 50%) = 3.15
Recommended program Flexible floorplan, separation Rule: construction and installations a + (a*g*b) a= standard ratio + 20% g = % recommended use (example: cultural or social) Flexibel vloerplan Aanbevolenb= programma Aanbevolen programma Flexibel vloerplan % bonus = (example social rent 20#)
Scheiding constructieScheiding en constructie en installatie
Regel: Regel: installatie a + (a *example: g * b) Volume with astandard + (a * g *ratio b) of 3 is filled with 50% social
rent. Extra floor space (bonus) becomes: 3 + (3 * 0.5% * 0.2%) = 3.3 a= Standaard ratio a= Standaard ratio + 10% g = % aanbevolen gebruik (vb.g = % aanbevolen gebruik (vb.
Design + 10% Eco-friendly + 5% Energy Saving + 5%
Result Maximum reward for desired initiatives
Design + 10 % Design + 10 % Eco-vriendelijk + 5% Eco-vriendelijk + 5% Energie besparend +5% Energie besparend +5%
Maximale beloning voor Maximale beloning voor gewenste particuliere iniatieven gewenste particuliere iniatieven
cultureel + sociaal huur) cultureel + sociaal huur) b = % bonus = vb. sociale huurb 20% = % bonus = vb. sociale huur 20% vb. Volume met standaard ratio vb.van Volume 3 met standaard ratio van 3 wordt gevuld met 50% socialewordt huur. gevuld met 50% sociale huur. Het extra vloer oppervlak (bonus) Het extra vloer oppervlak (bonus) wordt dan: wordt dan:
Figure 3. Bonus (incentive) based planning
3 + (3 * 0.5 * 0.2) = 3.3
3 + (3 * 0.5 * 0.2) = 3.3
+ 10 %
+ 10 %
Figure. 4 . The maximisation of the surface area within the boundaries of the light regulation leads to the shape of the building.
project ION VISION VIS land use plan
TIONland use plan EXECUTION EXECUexemption
Static rules and process
preservative land-use plan
20 wk project land use plan Wabo
exemption land use plan
preservative land-use plan
- large scale - detailed plans
- small number of institutional developers - resident consumes dwelling vision
- based on debt and short-term profit
- focus on new property
- rigid image
- erasure - regime of order and control
lease “erfpacht” contract renewement lease “erfpacht” contract renewement
No precario taxes for 5 years by opening first terrace No precario taxes for 5 years by opening first terrace
reduction OZB reduction OZB
Dynamic rules and process
Global land use plan Everything is possible, except...
Global land use plan Everything is possible, except...
land use plan update land use plan
- develop per lot
- anticipation, open for surprise No sewage, waste and
No sewage,purifaction waste and charges. purifaction charges.
- long term commitment to a place - evolution - adaptive
land use plan land use plan exemptionexemption
- incomplete form - rewarding - stimulating
Lower lease contract with
Lower lease contract with recommended use. recommended use.
Divide lot + 15 % BVO
Fig. 5. Towards a dynamic urbanism
Divide lot + 15 % BVO
There have always been arguments in favour of changing our system and methods, but in the aftermath of the financial crisis these views have become increasingly prevalent, witness the calls for more spontaneity, flexibility, bottom-up development, organic growth, new instruments and other business models. Interestingly, the current instruments in the Dutch framework such as the land-use plan (bestemmingsplan) do in fact offer many opportunities for dynamic planning. The law does not require static legal frameworks, rigid images and precise delineations. Yet we develop very preservative plans and we formulate strict rules about construction and usage possibilities. This is often the outcome of long development processes with difficult (expropriation) procedures, negotiations, research and over-determination. There are many understandable reasons for such tendencies, such as legal protection, (land) ownership, desire for order and control, and possibly distrust between parties. Whether this practice will change again when a ‘fundamental’ revision of the planning law is released is doubtful. If there was to be a
"Continuous change can be considered the only constant in the city, and to nurture this effectively the dynamic use of our controlling mechanisms is crucial." revision, local administrators would have more responsibility and autonomy, and would most likely follow previous traditions and continue to preserve and protect. In order to break this mentality good examples are necessary. • Framework
Continuous change can be considered the only constant in the city, and to nurture this effectively the dynamic use of our controlling mechanisms is crucial (fig 5). Design research by NEXT currently focuses on the opportunities allowed by the current Dutch instruments, whether public-law, privatelaw or financial instruments. Our goal is to explore how these controls can provide a dynamic framework in which a continuous
transformation of the existing city can occur - a system that can absorb and foster change. In a case study examining the transformation of the industrial district of Overamstel in Amsterdam, NEXT searched for an evolutionary zoning and incentive system in the context of property tax, leasehold and waste- purification- and sewagecharges. The planning system in Seoul, more specifically in the Hongdae district, can act as a source of inspiration for the Netherlands, where freedom for individuals, interchangeability of property functions, diversity between districts and the rewarding of an owners initiative are central. Behind the seemingly unorganized cityscape of Seoul lie many hidden valuable lessons for policy-makers, planners, urbanists and designers alike!
An excursion to bottom-up projects Report Matthijs van Oostrum Editor-in-chief Atlantis Msc 3 urbanism student
Figure 1. WeOwnTheCity Excursion © M. van Oostrum
WeOwntheCity is an exhibition that is dedicated to bottom-up projects in Amsterdam. As a kick-off to this exhibition ARCAM organized an excursion that passed along a selection of the projects. The projects had a large variety in locations, initiators and success, and thus shows the diversity and possibilities of bottom-up projects. The exhibition intends to “spark discussions and debates with the goal of understanding how to adapt to a changing urban development context.” Our first stop was the Afbramerij, a former shipyard at the NDSM area. The initiator enthusiastically tells us about the big plans they have for the building. The project should offer a workplace for the creative industry, where it is possible for small businesses to rent a studio. In addition, the whole project should be developed in a sustainable way. Unfortunately, the building is far from finished. Currently the fire department has trainings in the building which seems a more
appropriate use. The whole project is on hold because of problems with the investor. Our second stop was a vacant lot in the Kolenkitbuurt. Because it was not possible for the district to find investors for the site, it was decided that there should be temporal use for the site which would improve the social cohesion in the neighbourhood. The Kolenkitbuurt is a neighbourhood that was listed as a problem neighbourhood. The employment rate is low and there is a high percentage of immigrants. The council approached Cascoland which is an ‘international network of artists, architects, designers and performers sharing a fascination for interdisciplinary interventions in public space, promoting mobilisation, participation and networking through artistic exchange and collaboration.’ For the site in Amsterdam Cascoland proposed a small public garden, with barbecues and two henhouses. In addition a vacant building next to the garden was occupied as a lodge. This lodge is exclusively used for family members of the residents of the neighbourhood. Many residents have family in Turkey of Morocco
Figure 2. Temporary use on vacant plot in Kolenkitbuurt, Amsterdam © M. van Oostrum
ARCAM Amsterdam Centre for Architecture was set up as a foundation in 1986 and concentrates its activities in Amsterdam and the surrounding area. ARCAM aims to reach the largest possible public in order to broaden architecture's appeal and zeros in on topical issues and developments in Amsterdam, so that the discussion about the future is constantly fuelled. ARCAM also has a function as co-ordination centre and works together with a large number of institutes in order to support and co-ordinate existing programmes and to initiate new activities. www.arcam.nl
construction, lack of maintenance and social problems led to the decision to demolish the complex. This decision was made before the crisis of 2008. The crisis forced the housing cooperation to revaluate their decision. Ymere hired Eva de Klerk to research the local structure of the neighbourhood and to determine what use could be accommodated in the complex. De Klerk concluded that the complex could use residences with working space for young people. After four years of crisis about 80 ‘creative people’ and supporting companies have found a home in Heesterveld. To strengthen the creative look of the area large mural paintings now cover parts of the complex.
Figure 3. Presentation Pop-up park © M. van Oostrum
and because their own houses do not provide the adequate space to stay the night, a special lodge was reserved to let family members stay. Users pay a small fee of five euros per night, and the whole building is maintained by the residents. The public garden is one of more than a dozen projects throughout the Kolenkit to improve the neighbourhood. In contrary to the Kolenkit, the next location was much more secluded. The Tuin van Jan (garden of Jan) is a vacant courtyard between the Jan Eef straat and the Jan van Galenstraat. The space was sometimes used by the neighbourhood collective for small barbecues, but they decided that they could use the courtyard as a communal garden. Arboud Hekkens told the story of how a small neighbourhood collective that organized barbecues became a community trust that redesigned and maintains the courtyard. A community trust is a form of bottom-up organisation from the United Kngdom. It took the trust over a year to deal with the issues of responsibility (i.e. insurance), ownership, and agreement on the rules and purpose of the garden. The municipal government agreed to fund 150,000 euros for the project, which should not only cover the cost of the design and construction, but also the costs to set up the community trust. The opening of the garden will be on may 15th 2013. The next stop was in the Bijlmermeer, where housing cooperation Ymere redeveloped a residential complex Heesterveld. While the complex was only build in 1983, cheap
" A vacant building is used as lodge for family members of immigrants to stay."
The final stop was a huge empty plot in Zeeburg. Due to the crisis, the municipality lacked the money to develop the site. A competition was set up to find a temporal use for the coming ten years. The most important condition was that the site should be returned to the municipality in the same state as the current situation. Out of 29 entries a plan to develop the site as an area for land sailing was chosen. Interestingly enough, two of the representatives of one of the plans that was turned down was also at the excursion. Their main critique was the failure of the municipality to recognize the qualities of the different plans, and the possibility to combine several plans. The participants of the competition did not know the other plans before entering, so it was not possible to cooperate.
Figure 4. Murals at housing complex Heesterveld © M. van Oostrum
At the ground level of the city Constantin Petcou, Doina Petrescu, founders of atelier d’architecture autogéré www.urbantactics.org • Reclaiming the “contemporary city”
In the 1990s, critical debates in architecture and urban development began to take into account the dynamics, mutations and conflicts of life in the “contemporary city”. The term contemporary city itself was coined to differentiate these urban experiences from the troubled “modern city” which had fragmented by its own autonomous processes (Bell, 2004, p.14). Similarities emerged between these debates in architecture and the discussions taking place in contemporary art about the social and spatial dismantling of the “global” city. Common themes emerged; the transformation of urban spaces by “illegal” occupants; the privatisation of public space and the rise of gated communities; the increasingly artificial nature of urban settings and concomitant environmental problems; social and economic fractures affecting the mobility of populations; protest movements, urban actions and so on. These discussions also questioned the part played by artists’ in creating an alternative, a “substitute” city that invents new ways of winning back the contemporary city for its inhabitants (ErsatzStadt, Berlin). These discussions raised the need to restore a sense of the “commons” to the
contemporary city, re-conceptualising public property within what Lars Lerup calls a “sociopolitical ecology” (Lerup, 2004, p.19).
Constantin Petcou and Doina Petrescu are architects and activists. They have founded atelier d’architecture autogérée
One of the functions of architecture is to provide the tools for the sociopolitical ecology of the contemporary city. Atelier d’architecture autogérée (aaa) feels that achieving this task is impossible without the initiative and direct participation of the city’s inhabitants. Despite the great progress being made in theoretical debates on this subject, practical experiments in participatory urbanism are still in their infancy. Subsequently, rather than working within the mainstream of the architectural profession, aaa chose to align itself within a critical continuation of spontaneous actions carried out in the 1980s by different groups and inhabitants who reclaimed different ways of living and different social and urban policies. aaa draws inspiration from the squat movement in Germany, Holland and throughout Europe, the interventionist demands and urban movements in the USA and England (Reclaim the Street, Green Guerrilla and The Land Is Ours (TLIO)) the centri sociali in Italy, and also communal experiments such as KraftWerk1 in Zurich and citizen initiatives such as the citizens’ urban development workshops (ateliers
(aaa) in Paris, a collective platform conducting actions and research on urban mutations and emerging practices in the contemporary city, (www.urbantactics.org). aaa 's projects focus on issues of self-organisation and selfmanagement of collective spaces, emerging networks and catalyst urban processes, resistance to profit driven development, recycling and ecologically friendly architectures, collective production of knowledge and alternative culture. Recent projects include ECObox and Passage 56 as well as the trans-local networks PEPRAV (European Platform for Alternative Practice and Research on the City) and Rhyzom (a network of trans-local cultural practices). Currently aaa develops R-Urban, a participative strategy of urban resilience in the metropolitan Paris, through a pilot project supported by the EC innovation programme Life+.
Plastic bottle tops
An adapted version of this article will be published in De Architect magazine.
Figure 1. Functions in La Chapelle © aaa
populaires d’urbanisme) in France and, more recently, the use of tactical media by activist groups as instruments of urban selforganisation. • Interstitial land
Generally speaking, as atelier d’architecture autogérée, we position ourselves, as Deleuze would say, “in the middle”: in a dynamic, transversal position inside a production process based on the participation of many parties: residents and users, specialists and artists, politicians and institutions. We have positioned ourselves within the interstices
the major rail strongholds of the Gare du Nord and the Gare de l’Est, is a district with considerable amounts of undeveloped industrial estates and abandoned land. As a temporary and uncertain urban space, it remains uncodified by standard administrative development procedures. aaa argues that areas such as La Chapelle be granted a de facto status for flexible, provisional community use. We have baptised these spaces terrains of urban vagueness to emphasise that their vague, undefined, and fleeting nature forms a crucial part of their ongoing urban quality.
was granted the temporary use of two plots of land in the La Chapelle area belonging to the French railways. In October 2002, in cooperation with Sheffield University, the participation of local school students and residents, we created a prototype garden in the courtyard of Halle Pajol. The ECObox garden costs nothing, being built from pallets, gravel, plastic bottles and materials collected from a range of recycled local urban waste. To adapt the project to the plot of land, we set up a flexible, modular system making it possible to create a series of plots, of different sizes, delimited by rows
"Being temporary can streamline a project’s structure and enable barriers to be overcome more easily, making the project more open, creative and utopian."
Figure 2. Overview photo ECObox © aaa
of habits, customs and mind sets but also the spatial interstices of the city: abandoned, fallow and run-down urban areas. Urban interstices represent spaces that have so far eluded, perhaps temporarily, land development policies. They are the metonymy of everything not yet invested in the city - the stock of “available space”. Lying at the other end of the spectrum from the spaces frozen by the forms and functions of private ownership: they resist homogenisation and definitive appropriation. It is the neglected, urban and fallow land that conserves the potential of the city’s undefined and unspecified elements. La Chapelle, because of its geographical location as an “urban island” between
We propose they will be run using temporary, flexible and reversible programming under self-management principles. • Infrastructures and agencies
aaa seeks to reinvent the city’s political and social space by proposing new types of urban practices stemming from the spontaneous dynamics of the everyday (de Certeau, 1980). The economy of the “temporary interstice” creates new possibilities for impermanent arrangements, mobile devices and urban micro-dynamics. As a result “temporary” becomes an essential principle; being temporary can streamline a project’s structure and enable barriers to be overcome more easily, making the project more open, creative and utopian. After long negotiations, in July 2002, aaa
of stacked pallets. An addition principle was applied to the construction of the garden: each person or family wanting a plot had to make it themselves using pallets to build the boundary of their own patch and contributing to the communal path that led to it. The plot of wasteland was transformed into an interlocking network consisting of a nomadic garden (that was able to be dismantled and moved) and a number of mobile structures providing amenities lacking in the district: a cinema, an exhibition hall, an audiovisual workshop and a library. The project also included a kitchen, a tool bench, a rainwater tank, a mobile library and a mini media lab. These facilities helped create social infrastructure that opened up possibilities for desire and enjoyment of life in the city. Some of the facilities were used 25
by residents to re-appropriate urban space; for example, the kitchen module was used to cook family meals illustrating subtle resistance to individuated ways of city living. Rather than seeing ECObox as a series of objects and structures we conceptualised it as a series of agencies (Nicolas-Le Strat, 2004, p.66). Because everything was mobile and negotiable, the project was able to move from the initial location of Halle Pajol and be reinstalled twice in new locations, taking different forms and involving new users. Currently, ECObox is self-managed by a user association.
One of the questions we ask is how these moments of individual “rebellious spontaneity” can be incorporated within the collective project. Nicolas-Le Strat talks about the ECObox “micrology”, a dual logic of intensifying and opening up the project. Scale is important when talking about spontaneous and rebellious practices based on subjects’ desires as desire circulates at the molecular level. Guattari also mentions the “micro-politics of desire” and a micro-political scale of institutional experimentation that enables subjects to position themselves as subjects of desire in the social realm.
INSTITUTIONS CITY OF PARIS
PARIS MALAQUAIS ARCHITECTURE SCHOOL
UNIVERSITY OF SHEFFIELD
L'ÉCOLE SUPÉRIEURE D'ART GRENOBLE
RESEARCHER/ ARTISTS/ STUDENTS STALKER (URBAN ART GROUP, ITALY)
ECO-DESIGNERS & ARCHITECTURE STUDENTS
BORDER CARTOGRAPH GROUP
TEENAGERS / DJS
LOCAL MARKET LOCAL AFRICAN COMMUNITY INFANT SCHOOL
EXTERNAL PARTICIPANTS AND PARTNERS formal / institutional
informal / non institutional
INTERNAL PARTICIPANTS AND PARTNERS formal / institutional
informal / non institutional
objects/use relation loops people/use relation loops people and groups nod of crossing activities
Figure 3. Actor network in ECObox project © aaa
What residents find in ECObox is a space, free from preconceived ideas, that provides the freedom for participants to develop initiatives and new ways of doing things. Participants find their own way of negotiating inter-culturality, group self-management, political criticism, physical construction and arrangement, recycling and so on. By taking part in the building and managing of the project, and by being encouraged to find ways to take their own initiatives, people using the garden gradually shift from passive to active participants. This transition conveys not only the aims of the project’s methodology but also what Deleuze and Guattari call “subjectivisation processes”: “One can indeed speak of subjectivisation processes when one considers the different ways individuals or groups emerge as subjects: such processes are only of any worth insofar as, when they are made, they elude both established knowledge and dominant powers: even if they subsequently give rise to new powers or run through new knowledge. But at the time, they certainly feature a rebellious spontaneity.” (Deleuze,1990/2003, p.238)
According to Guattari, this “release of the energies of desire” is in the form of “a function of collective agency of the socius no longer seeking to force people into pre-established frameworks (...). This is the condition enabling the singularities of desire to be respected.”( Guattari, 1977, p.172) By way of example, Guattari mentions Fernard Deligny’s atypical work with autistic children in Cévennes, where he set up “a collective economy of desire that links people, gestures, economic and relational networks” in order to “provide desire with a channel of expression in the social realm”(Ibid, p172). ECObox seeks to set up a collective economy based on the “desire to create the city” and able the singularisation of inhabitants’ desire whilst simultaneously allowing them to relativise the model of desire imposed by institutions, brands and the media. This was made possible by the in-depth work of a painstaking, patient, micropolitical molecularity that takes the time to create relationships, overcome fear and mistrust, and employ everyone’s capacities to deal with conflicts and contradictions.
• Everyone’s architecture
ECObox is aimed at everyone: users are not filtered or chosen by their geographical location or ideological preferences, they are simply the ones “who are there”. Participants are only united by a desire to share some time, space and knowledge and a desire to do something together where they live. In the words of Michel de Certeau, the project brings together those seeking to express an “undecipherable and yet inevitable coexistence”. From this point of view, ECObox is a group experiment of what everyone’s architecture could be (Agemben, 1990): an architecture built of the singularities of desire which are almost invisible yet whose inventiveness and audacity springs from the modest means used, the heterogeneous solutions chosen, and the “radical”, democratic ways they recreate the city. Arjun Appadurai, in his research into the cultural phenomena of globalisation, speaks of the “production of imagination” as a social act - he emphasises the right of all citizens to take part in “the work of the imagination”(A. Appadurai, 2002, p.34) He speaks about the obstacles encountered by certain minority groups, existing under the dual neo-capitalist and neo-colonialist symbolic banner, to participate in this important social act. Appadurai emphasises the need for politics to acknowledge that “even the poorest should have the ability, privilege and skill to take part in the work of the imagination” (Ibid, p.46). For Appadurai the task of producing locality, a “structure of feeling stemming from the social and ideological existence of a specific community”, is increasingly at odds with the contemporary city. We feel that ECObox has successfully produced “locality” thanks to the gradual investment made by the different participants and the productive dynamics of their imagination.
Figure 4. ECObox project in full use © aaa
ECObox’s users have appropriated the project and relocate it on a different temporary available site. The spatial tools we have initially provided and the managerial skills they have acquired through the project have empowered them to claim space in the city and continue the project under the same principles on different locations without our help. ECObox has moved three times until now due to its mobile infrastructure, which was easy to dismantle, pack and relocate. Instead of disappearing when the initial site was claimed by a developer, the project has been multiplied, involving new sites and new users. A number of new projects using ECObox as a model, emerged in the neighbourhood and elsewhere. It is very much like a rhizome, which tends its multiple offshoots in time and in space: a networked like live construction, where knowledge of the city is generated and shared at the ground level by all participants.
The multiple instances of the ECObox and the different places it created through its successive relocations on temporary sites became sustainable catalysers of local democracy; they initiated connexions with other local projects and gave birth to large scale collective dynamics. Ecobox demonstrated that modest micro-spatial devices inserted in sterilized urban contexts, even if only temporary but based on a long term strategy, can generate sustainable sociality and can contribute to generate bottom up urban politics that empower thousands of residents to ‘take part in the work of the imagination’. Ana Medez de Andes and Doina Petrescu
Appadurai, A. “The Right to Participate in the Work of the Imagination”, in Transurbanism, Rotterdam, V2_Publishing/NAIPublishers, 2002, p. 34 and passim Bell, M. Nouvelles Cités de Réfugiés in Archilab, Orléans 2004, p. 14. De Certeau, M. L’inverntion du quotidien l’Arts de faire, Unions générale d’éditions . Paris 1980. Deleuze, G. “Contrôle et Deventir” in Pourparlers. Minuit 1990/2003, p238 ErsatzStadt, Berlin, www.etuipop.de/ ErsatzStadt, EasyCity, Amsterdam, http://www. vrijeruimte.nl/easycity/, CtiyMin(ed), Brussel, www.citymined.org Guattari F. La révolution Moléculaire, ed. Recherches, 1977, p172 Ibid, p. 46, p.172
Figure 3. Pallet devices in ECObox project © aaa
Lerup, L. in Archilab, Orléans 2004, p. 19 Nicolas-Le Strat G. Une projet d’Eco-urbanité:
City of today according to scattered densities
Beatrice Mariolle Researcher at Ausser/Ipraus Architect at Bres+Mariolle & Associates www.bresmariolle.fr
• What does the city of today look like ?
Holland is the best European example for the density of contemporary cities, according to Eurostat (Eurostat n.d.) the Netherlands comprise a rate of almost 50% of urbanisation with more than 500 inhabitants / ha. Less virtuous countries, such as France and Germany, comprise 8 to 12%. Despite the number of large French cities and highly concentrated centres, their density does not counterbalance the scattered and rural territories which make up most of the country. These comments accord with Robert Bruegman’s (Bruegman 2005) conclusions, who asserts that the populated urbanised area of New York is the least dense in the USA, whereas that of Los Angeles takes the prize of highest density. Referring to density in terms of worldwide concurrence for the highest and most emblematic buildings is not enough, we have to consider the real territory of today, meaning both centres and peripheries. Debates about towers should not conceal the
flow of housing estates. Thus, we should reconsider that many debates on questions regarding the compact city by means of great elevations, without undermining their necessity, restrict their view merely at a minor aspect of our urbanisation. The rest of the country, the in-between cities which are characterised
"Can we restrain the car addiction from which all these inhabitants suffer?" by low-density urbanisation, intermediate, rural and scattered urbanisation, are often subjected to contempt both in aesthetic and in social terms. Architects and urban planners do not get much involved in these territories which continue to grow according
to the rules of the market and the citizens’ persistent wish to live in an single family house with a garden. Being interested in low density spaces is a bit like playing the devil’s advocate. Urban sprawl is of course criticized by intellectuals and planners in favour of the pressure around transport poles, the making of the city on itself where it is considered to be already a city. But should those, who have settled far away from everything, on the limit of urbanization, in village extensions, for whom miles of networks and access roads have been built, really be blamed? These human layouts, set up mainly on agricultural lands, on the outskirts of cities, villages and towns, have not been subjects of large-scale planning. They neglect the surrounding landscape and its traditional installation criteria (land, water, accessibility). They prefer independence and decision autonomy, as it turns out to be more profitable. “Multicity has to be considered as a succession of places” (Gausa 2003).
Figure 1. Rural village in France © Google
• City and transport, dependency relationships “from the potato to the wine grape”
Today questions regarding the future of these territories should be asked in respect of the forecast exhaustion of the fossil energy resources, as well as climate changes. Is it possible to restrain the car addiction from which all these inhabitants suffer? Cause-and-effect relations between means of transportation and the layout of our cities need no further proof; horses, trains, bicycles, cars, and now mobile phones, internet, all material and immaterial transports participate in the transformation of our living environment. Although the car has not been the first cause of demographic diffusion, it has nevertheless been at the root of the unprecedented extension of the phenomenon. Only the car enables us to bear down the distances from between work, the children’s school, friends, shopping centres and leisure, or to accompany those who are either too old or too young and cannot drive, to go to the fastest station to reach the centres. It enables each of us to draw our own city. The evolution has been very fast. In barely a century we have gone from the pedestrian city to the networked city and consequently, in terms of city shape, from the « potato to the wine grape” (Dupuy 1991). It does not concern only housing, as industries, production units, offices, leisure parks, shopping equipment, are following the movement and scattered urbanization is becoming a global phenomenon. Aside from raising a variety of urban and architectural questions, this model has its limit in the car dependency, the destruction of agricultural lands and biodiversity.
Figure 2. Picardie ©NB. Mariolle 0
Two research studies (Mariolle March 2010), (Mariolle 2010), (Brès & Mariolle 2010-2012), (Brès, Desjardins & Mariolle 2010-2012) done on examples of French and German territories with scattered urbanisation, have allowed the observation of spatial organisations and alternative forms of mobility to the all-car.
The work was based on two remote samples of 250,000 ha (more or less 50-by-50 km²), with more than 20,000 inhabitants. When looking at the territories beyond the suburban area of cities, a decentralization occurs. While the peripheral is often considered as an extension, diffusion of dense urban centres, the staggered framing enables to understand these territories for what they are and the way they live on a daily basis. The first sample is in France, in Picardie, a rather poor region, formerly industrial, with a low demographic growth, an significant unemployment rate, unrestricted planning documents, and a dense network of railway tracks and stations. After an in-depth study of the French case, we thought it was interesting to draw a parallel with a German case famous for its virtuous and consistent approach between transport plan and urban patterns. The second sample is thus taken in German region of Francony, in Baden-Württemberg. It is a rich area in with a concentration of several car industries, a low demographic growth and a low unemployment rate. Here, planning documents are pro-active and integrate very innovative transport plans, especially near Karlsruhe. Surprisingly, similar results enable to state a few features. •• Unseen landscapes with built and open figures: The map representation shows a very fragmented urbanisation, which, in fact, is made up of a seedbed of built aggregates – small cities, towns, villages, hamlets, activities and shopping centres, industries,... scattered within wide open agricultural land, traversed by road and rail networks. •• Proximity and isotropy: both examples offer a certain regularity in their spatial distribution and a relative proximity between them. In both cases, the seedbed of small aggregates offers a regular pointillist figure with average distance between grains just above a km, whether in Francony (1,1 km) or in Picardie (1,2 km). Which equals a 15 to 20 minute walking or five minute cycling route. •• Historical construction of dispersion: the built aggregates are •• mainly made up from ancient cores, hamlets, which have gone through various extensions, at different points in time, with different formal languages... 10 km
Sources: SIG Brès+Mariolle, Regionalverband Heilbronn-Franken
Figure 3. Francony © B. Mariolle
10 km CP-FQ
Sources: SIG Brès+Mariolle, IGN BD topo, INSEE
• Scattered densities in spatial nearness
•• Proximity between employment and residence: commuting mobilities mainly work on nearness: in Picardie 60% of commuting journeys are made within the Square and are on average just above 5 km, in Francony 80% of commuting journeys are made within the Square and are on average just above 8 km. •• Ease of accessing services: Services are well-spread on the whole territory according to the logic of isotropy. In Picardie, the population theoretically has an average nearness to essential services of 2.1 km and to rare services of 4.9 km, whereas in Francony, the clustering of communes encouraged in the 1970s, together with a restructuring of the service network, proves efficient for communes between 1000 and 2000 inhabitants, but entails more important distances below. •• Alternative forms of transportation: recently emerged forms of mobility have been noticed in both researched territories, as «weak signals» of alternatives to the all-car policy (car sharing, mobile shops, redevelopment of cycling (EAPCs) and walking, taxi on request,...). In Picardie, this phenomenon appears because of a need to save money, rather than by choice, whereas in Francony it is organized and institutionalized. •• Planning and polarisation: a strong difference appears in planning tools. In Germany, pro-active and directive documents impose an important hierarchy between the regional communes and the towns within the Gemeinde (groupings of communes made during the
stain expanding from its centre to the outskirts is, in fact, wrong, since there are already human settlements on the outskirts of old cities. It is rather an agglomeration of small growing centres, with an increasing proximity, potentially merging to make up juxtapositions. • Scattered densities in new textures
“Rural is just a condition of the past”, says Kees Christiaanse (Christianse 2012). We could add that the urban is a widespread phenomenon in terms of living conditions as described by Françoise Choay. The peripheral is no longer a territory depending on the urban centre or emptying itself from its inhabitants and its activities in favour of cities, as they are no longer the only places for the exchange of goods and people, or necessarily the places for production, exchange and communication. Rural and peripheral territories become places for life and exchange and reveal diverse urban shapes deriving from textures produced by the proximity between generic elements and contrasts of scale within heterogeneous fragments. •• Tiny dissociated individual houses, individual gardens, vegetable garden plots, bus stops, village squares, flowers and bushes, insects and birds •• Vast intensively cultivated agricultural lands, forests, activities and
Figure 4. Model of exploded city by E. Saarinen
1970s). Services and new urbanisations are thus decided on a regional scale, consequentially leading to centralisation and an increase in the distances between residency and services. The rapidly stated conclusions of these two research studies give way to a specific outlook on these territories, which are seen as what they are and not according to their dependency to the centre city. We can try and list a few founding criteria of an architectural and urban renewal. • Scattered densities, a long story
Sprawl is neither recent nor particularly American, it is, instead, merely the latest chapter in a story as old as cities themselves and just as apparent in imperial Rome, the Paris of Louis XIV, or London between the world wars as it is today’s Atlanta or Las Vegas, or for that matter, contemporary Paris or Rome (Bruegman 2005). The story of urbanisation has always included the phenomenon of scattering, therefor can be found in many ancient maps. Few new implantations emerged during the 20th century, the process of urbanization derives from successive extensions concerning small towns as much as cities. The representation of urbanisation as an oil 30
logistic platforms, roadside trees •• Great amount of rivers, motorways, rail road tracks, electric lines, moving fauna and flora. Today, these new territorial textures stand for great sources of innovation in the conception of tools for both, natural and built territories. • Scattered densities and mobility bouquets
The forerunners of alternative transportation, which we have come across both in Germany and France, prove that alternative systems to the all-car are possible, whether they be institutionalised or not. A number of initiatives, sometimes almost hidden and marginal, are examples of emerging solidarities, which show a social and spatial organization. All of these experiments, unplanned and not centralized, turn out to be the result from an self-organised adaptation of supply and demand (shuttles, taxis on request,...) by the inhabitants to answer their daily needs in the form of mutual aid (carpooling, car-sharing, associative shops). New types urban organisations could build on these new forms of mobility and transportation.
• Scattered density, the city of the future ?
This attempt at a specific perspective is set in the continuity of urban planners’ approaches, architects or not, who, in the middle of the 20th century, wondered about the evolution of cities. In 1943, Eliel Saarinen (Saarinen 1965), imagined a positive future of exploded cities, in which the centre and the outskirts are reorganised into districts where work, leisure and culture are reintegrated within a territory which can be walked through, thus making up cities within the city. Frank Lloyd Wright, when thinking about the city of the future, between 1932 and 1958, forewarned about the risks incurred by society in not wanting to plan the countryside, « “America needs no help to broad acre city. it will haphazard build itself. why not plan it?” (Wright 1958) Christaller, in 1933, faced with the scattered urbanisation within the German territory, imagines a diagram which aims to adapt services and equipment to the population. This approach in distance / time draws a territorial balance of proximity. These three examples, taken from among others, reveal specific reflections on the organizational systems of demographic dispersion and on the resulting urban patterns. The three of them, convinced of the need to find suitable urban and architectural solutions, end up imagining very innovative and creative scenarios. Today, we can only bear in mind the soundness of this research track and repeatedly stress the necessity of finding innovative solutions. Because until now, solutions have not been appropriate, either application of solutions from cities, or self-development considering
Figure 5. Model of service distribution by Christaller
economical and profitability criteria. As it is known that in Europe urbanisation is largely already accomplished, we have to regenerate the countryside in order to merge the ingredients which are already there. A new building vocabulary of peripheral territories needs to be conceived and supplemented with the elements which are inseparable and essential to it : building, nature and agriculture. In the 21st century, nature and urbanisation are combined on all scales, integrating the questions of water, networks and technical infrastructures, daily uses, sensitive values. Nature is like a medicine which heals sites weakened by so many centuries of contempt for the environment. Good use can be made of the proximity between nature and urbanisation as noticed in territories with scattered urbanisation, so as to imagine
new iterative systems between local life, biodiversity, production, food, exchange and solidarity systems. Brès, A, Desjardins, X & Mariolle, B 2010-2012, ‘Mobilités dans l’”entre-ville” Une comparaison franco-allemande’, BRES+MARIOLLE, IPRAUS, CRIA, PREDIT Groupe opérationnel G03 Mobilités dans les régions urbaines, Paris. Brès, A & Mariolle, B 2010-2012, 'Les figures d'une éco-mobilité périurbaine, entre intermodalité obligée et densité dispersée›, BRES+MARIOLLE, IPRAUS, CRIA, PUCA, Paris. Bruegman, R 2005, ‹Sprawl a compact history›, The University of Chicago Press, p. p5. Christiananse, K 2012, ‘The New Rural: Global Agriculture, Desakotas, and Freak Farms’, MONU #16 - NON-URBANISM. Dupuy, G 1991, L’urbanisme des réseaux (p.87), Armand Colin, Paris. Eurostat, http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu. Gausa, M 2003, Dictionary of Advanced Architecture, Actar, Barcelona. Mariolle, B 2010, ‘Quand nature et transport dessinent le périurbain’, Ville, transport et territoire, quoi de neuf ? - premières journées du Pôle Ville Université Paris Est, Paris. Mariolle, B March 2010, ‘L’habitat au risque des transports’, Habitat et Société - Habitat 2022, dossier habitat : état des savoirs et prospective. Saarinen 1965, The City, Its Growth, Its Decay, Its Future, M.I.T. Press. Wright, FL 1958, The Living City (p.159), Mentor Book, New York.
Figure 6. Gerabronn, Germany © B. Mariolle
Mural staircase TU Delft We were contacted by Polis for the Urbanism week to perform a Workshop with the theme: 'How can street art improve the neigbourhood'. On this occasion we made a wall painting in the staircase of the Faculty of Architecture. At first sight, it appears as an abstract chaos, but if you look closer you discover a groundplan with a structure, balance and even buildings. It looks like the wall has burst open and you can see its contents, like in the building, where the technical elements are visible too. In this way the piece of graffiti art is different but integrated as well.
Bas van Oudheusden & Martinus Papilaja www.tweeachtfour.com www.bcone.nlartist
33 Main image ÂŠ Yongki Kim,
Small images ÂŠ W. Gorter
Urbanism Week Reflection
Second-hand Cities Report Figure 1. UW Debate © W. Gorter
Karlijn Kokhuis & Kitty busscher Urbanism Week Committee Msc 3 students
We are very happy with this year’s Urbanism Week, on which a part of this Atlantis issue will reflect. We hope to start a new tradition in which students and professionals are brought together yearly to discuss the latest developments and changes in their field of work. Besides professionals, this year we welcomed students from Den Bosch, Rotterdam, Eindhoven, Utrecht, Maastricht, Amsterdam, Breda, Deventer and Delft. This kind of event is very important for both students and professionals to
The Urbanism Week is an attempt
widen their scope and to stimulate a better link between the two. Students have the
to, after the fire that destroyed
possibility to see what happens in the profession they are being educated for and
our faculty building, reconnect to
to obtain knowledge they cannot learn from the curriculum. For professionals this is
this field. In a five-day series of
the ultimate possibility to see what the new generation is up to and what new ideas
activities Polis aims to again form a
are growing at universities and academies.
platform for dialogue, criticism and discussion. www. urbanismweek.nl
Urbanism Week Sponsors:
Figure 2. Lecture Machiel van Dorst © Polis
This exchange brings up new ideas was proven by the animated discussion concluding our workshops on Wednesday. One of the topics discussed firmly was the influence of social media. Where some people believed this new technology will change our profession completely, others agreed with Michiel de Lange that ‘the digital wave of information might rather be a valuable source of information for urban designers and planners, instead of a phenomenon which changes our core business profoundly’. The only thing we have to learn, is how to filter and read this new kind of information. Another interesting discussion that kept 34
on returning during both workshops and lectures was the tendency that the urbanist is asked more and more to become a homo universalis. Knowledge on design is not enough anymore; we should be a sociologist, politician, manager, mediator, artist and designer at the same time. Atelier d’Architecture Autogerée was very much in favour of this change. Others were more hesitant in adopting this idea of the uomo universalis, arguing that we should keep our focus at design as a starting point always to prevent ourselves from becoming a specialist without specialism, and slowly making ourselves superfluous.
operating very locally, the initiative spreads out very fast throughout his country and beyond and similar design teams pop up everywhere. Whereas on Thursday we saw many speakers that talked about changing the ‘rules’ and the laws in urban planning, the Friday showed us a bit more how rules and policies also can be used to start changes in the city. Joan Busquets focussed on re-scaling infrastructure and public space in the city. Where this large scale infrastructure has served its purpose for many years he argued that it is now the time to redesign these structures into more subtle and smaller scale places, to be useful for the existing city again.
Figure 3. Workshop © Polis
John Habraken started the symposium with a very captivating lecture in which he showed that certain waves return every ten to twenty years. He explained that large changes in urbanism occur very often just after a big crisis ‘because the crisis offers us time to think and reflect’, which is necessary for ideas to form and to fundamentally change our profession. He thinks the key to this change is Cultivation. ‘We have to cultivate the large urban organism that is called city, instead of trying to design it like we did during the last decennia and like we are still taught to.’ Rudy Stroink agreed that we cannot design our city as throughout
"We have to cultivate the large urban organism that is called city, instead of trying to design it like we did during the last decennia and like we are still taught to." as we were used to do, but he argued that the current generation should not wait and only think, but act and push the change. ‘You should not be the deer looking into the headlights of the recession.’ He thinks, coming back to the point of the uomo universalis, that the way we have to work to get out of the recession is more multidisciplinary than we are used to at the moment. One of the examples of a new multidisciplinary approach on very small scale was given by Santiago Cirugeda with his design teams of lawyers, economists, environmentalist, designers and civil servants. Although
Figure 4. Lecture © Polis
Bart Reuser showed us a different approach by the many changes that happened and are still happening in Seoul, Korea. He was wondering why Seoul was changing very fast and yet in the Netherlands nothing was happening. It is because of the system of regulations. Our static rules and process do not work anymore, dynamic rules and process should be the new regulation system. Only then it is possible to create a dynamic city, like Seoul; where the system adapts to what the people want, what the city wants and what politicians want. Next to changing the regulations, he thinks we need to work together and be more than an architect. To create a dynamic city ‘we should be looking for locations where people can start their own dream without planning everything in advance’. 35
Figure 5. Workshop © Polis
Figure 6. Lecture © W. Gorter
Henk Ovink explained about the relation between politics, design and planning. He told us that the ‘what is or is not allowed in the Dutch situation, is a very vague area. There are different approaches to our urbanity’. He thinks that initiatives are needed; initiatives like Santiago Cirugeda showed in his presentation on Thursday, where people with a common interest look for a vacant spot in the city and start building their project. Initiatives are needed to test the rules and regulations, to test design and to test the government situation, ‘to test and to stretch it’.
to share this with our colleagues. It was nice to see that professionals were also interested to discuss about these topics with students. For us, the organising committee, the Urbanism Week has passed in a wink after spending months with the preparations of the week itself. Last year the Urbanism Week was brought to life again with the appealing theme ‘So you are an Urbanist’. Whereas this theme questioned the role of the urbanist, this year’s theme ‘Second hand cities, rethinking practice in times of standstill’ continued the discussion. We know we have to change our profession, but how fast and to what extent? How do we get from knowing we have to change to really being the change? We found out that we are not yet completely thinking from the notion that our old way of designing is no longer valid and that we have to deal with ‘Second hand cities’. Changes may go slowly but in these ‘times of standstill’ we might find some space to think to make that change. With the set-up of the program we tried to confront the older generation with the younger one, and the designing people with the policy makers. We hope this symposium has searched and achieved to bring visitors a bit further in adapting and being part of this change.
"Changes may go slowly but in these ‘times of standstill’ we might find some space to think to make that change."
Frits van Dongen concluded with the message that we should create the adaptive city. ‘The adaptive city is based on infrastructure, re-allocations and re-use. It focuses on the small scale. Within that, design is the art of connecting all the focus elements.’ He thinks that we have to learn from the last ‘golden ages’, what we can do with all the positive and negative facts out of it. It has been a week with a lot of information and opinions to think about. That was our goal with the Urbanism Week; making people think about our practice in times of standstill. Preparing the Urbanism Week we realised that there is so much going on in the ‘real world’ and that a lot is changing in our profession, this is what we wanted 36
Figure 7. Lecture © Polis
Figure 8. Duzan Doepel © W. Gorter
Figure 9. Wouter van Stiphout © W. Gorter
Figure 11. John Habraken © Polis
Figure 13. Santiago Cirugeda © Polis
Figure 14. Constantin Tecou © Polis
Figure 10. Frits van Dongen © W. Gorter
Figure 12. Joan Busquets © Polis
Figure 15. Beatrice Mariolle © Polis
Interview with Joan Busquets Joan Busquets BAU Barcelona. Arquitectura i Urbanisme Winner of the Erasmus Prize 2011 www.bau-barcelona.com
‘Re-scaling the city: Infrastructure as new geographies’ was the topic of Joan Busquets lecture during the Urbanism Week at TU Delft. Busquets presented a new point of view of how infrastructure can modify the perception and the reality of space. The lecture demonstrated that infrastructure is not only part of the engineer’s job, but also something that urbanists must engage with further. Firstly, Joan Busquets explained the fascination for the highways and huge infrastructure during the 20th century and although nowadays the fascination has disappeared, the huge infrastructure remains in the middle of the cities. This was during the dictatorship of the car and ‘today this is one of the discussions: how to deal with the cars. We should go beyond making the cities nicer, but also think about their main concept and improve them.’ Secondly, the infrastructures are changing the geographies. In the case of a project ‘The Spoorzone Delft’, the train and the railway station provide opportunity for improvement. Finally, Joan Busquets explains, using the example of Barcelona, how Cerdà’s plan created the conditions that allowed the city to have so many examples of good architecture and urbanism.
What does ‘second hand city’ mean to you?
The term ‘second hand’ often can be negative. For me, ‘second hand city’ means the real city, when the city gets a different use. When you look at the many fragments of the city, they are all recycled and in reuse for perhaps the second or third time. It is then that the city starts to become vibrant. Always the problem for the city is the start. As designers, we tend to love when the drawing is finished, we do the picture, and then we abandon the site. The real thing is what happens after us. This is when you can see whether things are working or not. The design of a city is never a closed project, but a project that is able to start up many other things. In my experience citizens, developers and everybody tends to enter the projects. You have to consider some strategy. You define the important things. Strategy means not only infrastructure but also a certain idea about the form of the city, how the density will be located, facilities etc. These are very important, you take one fragment and you revisit this list of priorities and you start
introducing other things. By doing that, then the project is going to improve. That is the reason why I always like to design one fragment of the city we are proposing. Because I can test if this was right, and then can learn. We have to produce the mechanism in terms of design. That does not mean that when you work at the scale of city, for example master planning, that we are not defining the form of the city, as we are already designing. In the Delft project, there were quite some problems, for example, how the houses are going to be. I have some ideas that I was quite convinced about, but they are still not yet fixed, because the demand is not yet there. It is essential to imagine that we do not make a single comprehensive model and everything is fixed. We do many models. The first model to fix certain things, but the other models will start getting more into the infrastructure, the solar orientation or certain other issues. It is not easy, but can be quite rich and sometimes you have to be able to recycle your ideas.
"When you look at the many fragments of the city, they are all recycled and in reuse for perhaps the second or third time. It is then that the city starts to become vibrant."
How do you relate to and work with engineers on the projects?
The engineers tend to be people prepared for the problem solving. When we were initially working on the project in Delft, there were thirteen alternatives for the layout of the train. They started first with their idea that they were very proud of, and we were here to give another dimension to the rationality. They are very rational and of course sometimes they do not consider other urban issues that are quite essential for the long run success of the project. In the end infrastructure is not an autonomous object, it must be conceived to provide better life and services to the community, and should serve the city and the urban territories nearby. That is where our skills are different from the engineers. On the other hand, we learn a lot from them by these types of workshops and discussions. Do you think engineers, architects and urbanists work alongside each other then or a certain hierarchy is important?
I always feel it is very difficult to design together at one table. I think it is almost impossible, because you all have your own skills. You need time to give feedback. I have to listen what others say and then I can recycle. The approach is to create a certain idea by looking and listening and then to make some synthesis. Is there any project you would like to do that you have not?
Yes. Thousands, we always work in existing cities, adding or changing infrastructure and so on. Once we were invited to do a competition nearby in Rotterdam. The project involved the creation of new land. They asked, why are you interested in that project? I was interested because it was the first time in my life that I was going to design a place that did not exist. A white piece of paper, but I discovered it was not. Because there were some views, the sun and wind that may influence the design strategy. It is never a piece of white paper, there are always the tensions lying and this helps a lot rooting any urban project into reality.
Figure 1. Layered structure Delft Spoorzone ÂŠ Joan Busquets 39
Figure 2. Embedding of Delft Spoorzone © Joan Busquets
Did you use the same design process of starting with a small strategic intervention for this project?
I think this is a good approach in principle but not always. I do not think there is one system. It is good to do a fragment and try to stress and improve it. That helps a lot also to create a dialogue with the other agents. We never work alone, we have a team, but you also have local authorities, the developers and citizens and it is essential that they can follow and understand the process. Now we are doing a project in France where we are reorganizing the city centre of Toulouse. Every millimetre of the city is packed with cars. A beautiful city, but spoiled by cars. But how to fix that? If you started with a big intervention right away, then you would have a revolution. You cannot get rid of the cars so easily. When I started working in Delft, the city centre was also full of cars. Then the city decided to take some pilot projects. This means that you are going to fight with some cars already, but by doing that, probably people can see how much the quality of space and their walkability can improve. It is a question of where to intervene strategically. If you take the most banal place, it is stupid, and if you take the hottest point, they perhaps will kill you before you start. How do you then imagine a future with more ‘car-free’ cities?
We already see that this is not a dream. The cars are evolving, the situation is changing, and the new generation has a completely different attitude towards the car. Of course, it will take 20 or 30 years. This is the reason we have to prepare the city in a way that it could happen. I am not against the car, I am against the way that the car is used in the 40
cities. The car was one of the driving forces of the town planning of 20 century. In the 21st century the car is only one element, but not the most important one. Here in Europe, you have a capacity of creating the ‘car free’ model. This change is already happening, for instance, if we consider Paris ten years ago, imagine today that we could have so many bicycles. The bicycle today it is becoming the fashion. We can import ideas to make pilot actions, but the success can only be achieved when things are really shared by the people, and it becomes ‘culture of the place’. How else do you see the city changing?
In the future people are going to change their pattern of working as we see is already happening. This means the city is going to be more intense in terms of flows. But these flows will be more individually programmed. Now, we would like to make the choices. We do not like go always by bike or car. The future city is a place for choices and this changes the way that the city is organised. Dwelling is not a place to sleep as the modernists were thinking. Now, the house is turning into a completely different thing. We have to be very critical as we still design like they did the 1960s and unfortunately, the way we make the houses all over Europe is not very creative. Designing architecture is also designing spaces that people can arrange and define themselves.
adaptable and changeable, within a certain budget. This is the reason why today, the theory of Habraken is still so interesting. He is saying you have to pay attention and discriminate what is important. We have to go very much to the basic things. When designing houses and cities we have to be very clear what is essential, and these essential things have to be efficient and beautiful. For example, everybody loves a street with a good proportion. We have to introduce certain ideas of beauty, rationality and efficiency. If one thing could cost 10 euro why should it cost 20? I never will be proud of saying, like some architects, ‘I built a building that is the most expensive in the world’. I would be ashamed. Our contribution is socially engaged. Society wants urbanists and architects to take care of things. We are designing for the future, we are designing things which will last. If I would be a doctor, I would always feel that when I look at a patient that they will die one day, but when I design city it is not going to die. And that is beautiful. Today there is this fascination of the 1960s and 1970s and its highways. We have certain fascinations as well. We have to be aware what is authentic and what is fashion. Today everything that is green is fine, but useful green needs certain conditions, like continuity and good integration with the natural environment, etc. Which 'fascinations' do you see coming
So how does the role of the urbanist
out of university from the students?
If you make the presentation about your project, you should not forget about its ‘sustainability’. But any good project in the 1970s or in 1770, was already sustainable. It is like 10-15 years ago, everything was about ‘participation’. Of course, how do you design
To make spaces that people can work in and change together in a very rational way. Anybody can do a house, but they might do a very terrible house. It is our responsibility to produce the most efficient house, being
without any feedback from the people who are going to use it? Then by talking about it, you are only selling the project. I do not like to sell the projects. I want to explain the reason so people will give me feedback that may influence and enrich the project. We did one project in the west of Amsterdam, which is now under construction. In this project, we had a process of communication with the residents. You might imagine that the people are not interested in architecture or urban design, but it is not true. They want to see, and they are asking me very simple things for instance, how the kitchen will look, how the terraces are going to be, or where their kids are going to play outside. They ask about the things that are important in the everyday life. By listening to these questions you can reconsider some solutions and can make the process more rational. Because sometimes you cannot make the people happier, but you can make the project better. In these situations, is listening and negotiation the key?
Absolutely, in general, at least in my experience, people want a better environment. The thing is that we have to come down on their level and we have to listen to what they want. We have to explain, rather then make a theory of architecture that people do not understand. If you want to get a feedback on your idea, you have to explain the things in a way that people can follow. This does not mean that our work is simple, it is extremely complex, but in the end we must be able to explain it in a way the majority can understand. What do you think of the large projects that are happening in for example Chinese cities, such as the new towns?
The question of the big project is something that is as on the table seriously. For instance, Shanghai right now there are many new towns are under construction. It is amazing. We studied these projects. The problem is that most of them are following the same pattern used after WWII. A great effort must be made at the Universities exploring and creating new paradigms that can better respond to the new urban culture. We do need more research to make sure the theory comes into practice and that the problem should be defined. Is it about the craft and taking care of the experience of living in these places?
In my opinion we have to design by steps, even if you are designing a new town, you also need consider the room. We are doing one project in China and we are trying to use all the European methods for the design: which implies a longer process in the design ‘construction’. However, they said ‘no, you can do the whole project in one shot’ for a piece of seven hundred meters by four hundred meters: And I do not think this is the way. The question is about the method of making a city. Designing a city means you have to create a certain dialogue, between the pieces, the programs and the actors in place. This is the only way, but it takes more time.
Figure 3. Sections Delft Spoorzone © Joan Busquets
What is the ‘European method’ then?
So the designer also needs to be a ‘normal’ person?
What I called the European method is not the simulation of the history, it is the integration of many layers: from the reality we are dealing with, but also from the urban culture of the moment which is changing quite fast. The designers have different attitudes so if you are working together, these things are creating positive energy.
What we call ‘normal’ should be fine. I consider myself as a normal person. Everybody wants to be fine then the city is like that. There are exceptional people such as Edison, Newton, but there are few of them. We need Newtons and Edisons, but we also need the reasoning and doing of normal persons. Yongki Kim, Nerea Pinedo and Andrew Reynolds
Spoorzone Delft workshop
Workplace use the empty space Report
Figure 1. Spoorzone workshop © Polis
Esther Verhoek (Delftse Datsjas) Cunera Smit (Groen Spoor) Karlijn Kokhuis ( RolKas Concept)
Due to the economic crisis, the opportunities for developing large scaled projects are changing rapidly. But there is a new solution: organic area development. No big master plans, but little developments which are taken step by step, responding to the unpredictable. They also depend on the initiatives of the inhabitants and entrepreneurs of the city. Polis has organised a workshop, on the site of the Spoorzone (original plan byJoan Busquets) to explore this new phenomenon.
The Spoorzone workshop was held at 15 June 2012 in the loft of the
The workshop is on the Zuidgebied in Delft, this is the area south of the Prinses Irene tunnel, west of the current train track. Because this train track will be under the ground in the future, the area will have a lot of transformation. Different teams participated in the workshop, and had to come up with ideas to make a better connection between the surrounding areas, design a new urban framework for the area, for today and for the future, and invent temporary solutions which give positive impulses to the development. • Delftse Datsjas
The first group came up Datsjas; Pioneers and Spoorzone Zuid'. This was a based on phased release of
with 'Delftse colonists in growth model the area and
transformation from temporary use to permanent use, led by pioneers and colonists. An important feature will be a central park, which will have a binding function. The design is split up into two phases. In the first phase, only the western side of the area will be in use with functions which will be important for the later eastern side. The remaining space of the west will be taken by the pioneers. They will have the opportunity to create their own gardens, meadows, Delftse datsja garden houses or bigger initiatives. In between these pioneers, the colonists will come, to be the first real settlers. They will give an identity to the area. Examples of colonists are schools and business centres. There will be requirements to the permanent buildings to stimulate further urban development. For
Figure 2. Participants at workshop © Polis
trainstation building Delft. The original plan of Joan Busquets for the Spoorzone (railway area) is not feasible anymore and the city of Delft has started a new way of urban planning: organic urban area development. No big master plans anymore but small developments that develop in their own way and are driven by inhabitants and entrepreneurs. Polis organised a one-day compact workshop including 3 lectures on this topic, dealing with the south-area of the Spoorzone. www.polistudelft.nl/events/polisworkshop-spoorzone-south-area/
instance, on top of the Irenetunnel will be the Irene boulevard with buildings alongside for creative young companies: Bacinol 3. To prevent the new road from becoming a barrier, the road will be constructed as a parkway, with two one-way roads. In the second phase, the eastern side will be developed into an urban park with a canal on top of the traintrack. The functions in the west will move to the east and the patchwork will be filled in. • Groen Spoor
Groen Spoor, green track, is based on a green zone next to current green zone. The current green zone is located on top of the train track, as it is prohibited to build on it, but it will eventually be broadened. This is because the current green zone is too narrow and there will be no connections between the different areas next to it. Therefore different routes for slow traffic are made through the green zone. In this way, the green will be more connected with the existing routes of the surrounding area. In the north-east the green zone will be surrounded by existing building of six floors. This will be the same in the south-east and along the Irenelaan to strengthen the image of the city boulevard. In the green there will be a lower building height (from three to four floors) with distinctive design. Additionally, in the green zone different programs can be used. These programs can be temporary or permanent, depending on their success. Examples are an Innovation Lab or urban greenhouses combined with restaurants and bars. The green zone can be used for art landscapes and explore labs for children. The remaining zones can be temporarily used for events. In the green zone there will be water storage by wadi’s and water features. All together the area will be become a urban park that can adapt to different needs of the city and can give quality to its surroundings. • Rolkas concept
The concept of the Rolkas (moveable greenhouse) is based on two ideas: the fact that the development along the train track will move to the place where it is most needed, and the idea of moveable greenhouses. The greenhouse will move along the green zone nearby the train track and adjust to different growth and changes. The area south of the Westlandse weg will be provided with minimal infrastructure and water. The extended Coenderstraat and the water along the boulevard will be put on top of the underground track. This way the green zone along the train track will be visually widened until almost 80 meters. At the edges of the project, on clearly visibly spots, there will be place for a Souk and the extension of students housing and small commerce. The surrounding areas will be connected to each other by desire paths which will be incorporated in the urban design. The connected space that is left over next to the Voorhof neighbourhood will now belong to this neighbourhood. Therefore it will be easier to sell, compared with the fragmented parts that are currently planned. In the north of the area there will be a place for tourists and students to find temporary accommodation. The Rolkas, the movable greenhouse, will start in the north, being the activator of the park. Later on the Rolkas can be used as a pavilion that can be moved for big events. In the rest of the park there will be places for urban farming and events. When they want to develop the north the Rolkas and the temporary accommodation will move to the south until the whole area has become a new urban neighbourhood.
Figure 3. (top to bottom) Delftse Datsjas, Groen spoor, Rolkas © Polis
The Lifetime city Vertical Cities Asia
Laura Dinkla, Katerina Salonikidi, Maria Stamati, Johnny Tascon, Qiu Ye Msc3 Urbanism Students
• The Lifetime City
• Yongsan’s neighbourhoods
Asian cities have been constantly growing rapidly and radically. The city of Seoul, capital of South Korea, has also faced an increasing densification process. As a consequence many traditional neighbourhoods have disappeared and have been replaced by modern, luxury apartment complexes. These complexes are often standardized high rise apartments, very efficient in density terms. However, this typology does not represent the identity of the city. Due to the project for densifying Yongsan district the geographical and functional centre of Seoul will move from its historical location towards this competition site. We believe that this densification scenario can be a process that will have negative impact on the existing neighbourhoods where urban life has evolved over years. By increasing the density of the existing, instead of a tabula rasa, the traditional lifestyle in the local neighbourhoods can be protected, enhanced and used as basis for the new development.
In the traditional neighbourhoods the people and the city have evolved together. Therefore, in these areas the vitality and atmosphere of the urban form spontaneously responded to human needs. A key characteristic of these neighbourhoods seems to be the good accessibility to basic necessities and urban services. While analysing successful residential neighbourhoods, it is clear to see that people can reach within walking distances basic destinations such as the grocery shop, the hair salon, the church, the community centre, the station for public transportation, the park, a friend’s home friends’ house and so on. According to the International Longevity Centre one of the central characteristics of the Lifetime Neighbourhoods is that they are able to arrange their services, built environment and public spaces in such a way so as to facilitate access of people with reduced physical abilities”. One basic design premise for our proposal is that if the city works
'In order to face the social challenges of ageing in Seoul, we propose a city in which traditional neighbourhoods’ structures are the roots for new high dense neighbourhoods.'
Figure 1. Atmosphere collage © VCA Lifetime city
Figure 2. (top) Masterplan Yongsan © VCA Lifetime city
for an elderly person, it works for everyone. The roots of our design lay in a basic neighbourhood structure we found not only in Seoul and Asian cities, but also in examples around our own homes in Rotterdam. Their main characteristic is the neighbourhood backbone, the main local street that consists out of all kinds of local places which facilitate basic urban functions such as a grocery store, a bakery, a hairdresser and so on. Some secondary streets provide functions at a larger scale, while primary roads connect the neighbourhood to the city surrounded by higher densities. Other streets possess a ‘pure’ residential character. They are quieter and safer which allows the children to play outside and elderly to socialise on the street. • Green
The city of Seoul lacks green areas in the central districts. This problem is considered to be solved by the development of the new Yongsan Park (West 8 & Iroje proposal) replacing the existing U.S. Yongsan Garrison base. In order to make the park accessible to people, green connectors crossing our site from west to east are proposed. An extra north-south connector rediscovering the Uk ch’on stream aims to bring people to the north bank of the Hang River.
Figure 3. (bottom) Diagram users over time © VCA Lifetime city
By introducing these green corridors the atmosphere around the existing functions will be enhanced. In addition, the appearance of the local places will be reinforced by the green rays which will simultaneously add new activities and provide new connection. In this environment, new densities can be introduced by keeping the same functions on the ground floor and increasing the vitality of the area not only for visitors but also for local inhabitants. • (Hi)stories
Our master plan aims to be part of the local evolution process of urban structures and engage with the communities we found there. An example of this statement is the design of the street leading to the recently developed Yongsan Park. There, points of interest that have been part of this community more than 30 years will be emphasized. Places like the Yongsan Post Office, the Fashion Gallery or the public playground 'One child heart' are popular meeting spots that have witnessed the ongoing mix of Seoulites and immigrants in this area. These places are integrated in the new design in order to retain the identity of the city.
The Open Ended City Vertical Cities Asia
• The Open Ended City
Architecture by its very nature is a product of a broader socio– economic and political context. Spurred by what has been dubbed the Bilbao effect, developers and city planners have seen iconic buildings as major element in order to attract financial investment in the form of tourists and monetary flows. This architecture style has resulted in the production of buildings that offer visually consumable forms.
Stef Bogaerds, Samuel Liew, Jan Maarten Mulder, Erjen Prins, Claudio Saccucci Msc3 Urbanism Students
of elderly people in Korea and catering to these needs by provisioning an enhanced accessibility program. In addition, we sought for the creation of more opportunities for interaction between people and environment within the broader framework of the fact that cities are constantly ageing and growing too. •
"Our aim is to propose a development that is A substantial amount of time was given to able to retain the authenticity of the city while understand the necessities of Korean people, The architecture or extending the dialogue between what is already and the importance of master plan does not strengthening the local existing and what is to come. " have to announce communities. itself or to be sensationalised. In contrast, they should primarily focus on creating the ideal backdrop for the flourishing of activity. We sought to uncover and intensify the existing urban form, and aimed to renew the pattern of the city based on the city itself. Our master plan hinges on the premise that not just “everyone ages” but rather, everything ages; we addressed the ageing issue in a holistic way, understanding the needs
We explored the idea of community through programmatic circles as a tool to organize programs in a meaningful way. The aim of these programs is to locate provisions of all basic needs of an ageing population within a walkable radius of five minutes. The potential of these communities is that they disperse functions as opposed to create clusters of one particular kind of activity. At the heart of the communities are the hybrid
Figure 1. Atmosphere collage © VCA Open Ended city
Figure 2. (top) Masterplan Yongsan © VCA Open Ended city
centres which accommodate functions such as healthcare / education / housing which incorporate intensively the oldest (elderly) and youngest (children) demographic groups. The archetype of the ‘public square’ in European urban planning was present in Korea in the form of school yards, which amidst a sea of tight knit developments, were the only open plots. This has been an interesting design decision because it is not just an opportunity for a new form of mixed program utilizing the existing open space but also because of the high priority that Korean society places on education. This really has justified it to become the heart of these communities. Serving as a catalyst for urban regeneration and growth, these centres would attract more people to live in surrounding areas whilst serving the people and allowing the elderly to share their experience and knowledge with younger generations. • Event Core
In addition to catering to communities, the leisure seekers form another important user group in the Yongsan area. The newly
Figure 3. (bottom) Growth diagram © VCA Open Ended city
formed park and surrounding museums and waterfront districts create preconditions for accommodating leisure activities . This will activate the whole area and create a buzz that most residential neighbourhoods lack. The event core comprises of cultural and leisure programs that are situated between the communities, binding them together. Moreover, it also creates a strong connection to the park and the waterfront from the YongSan station which is situated in the middle of the site. • Growth
By prioritizing the long term growth of Yongsan in the design process, the strategy primarily focuses on creating conditions and rules that will guide the growth of the city. By varying this set of rules: the permeability of the block, the height of buildings, setbacks and plot coverage according to the specificity of the site, we have been able to define and differentiate four communities. This broad framework allows for the preservation of qualities that make cities interesting and at times unpredictable and unique places whilst embracing the high densities required in the brief. 47
Venice Biennale 2012 Report Figure 1. Venice © Andreas Faoro
francesca rizzetto MSc 3 Urbanism Student
Continuity, context and memory are and the words, linked to 'common ground' which David Chipperfield - British architect director of the thirteenth edition of the Venice Architecture Biennale used. He referred to these keywords in a talk to his colleagues, in a 'Common Ground' as he titled the exhibition, which was inaugurated on August 29th and will remain open until November 25th.
For the Biennale, invited architects were asked to talk about their personal idea of architecture, even before their projects are finished. In this way we could reflect on 'the apparent lack of agreement between the profession and society.' Chipperfield:' I did not ask the architects what they do, but what their contribution to architecture is. We need architects, but this is an exhibition of architecture and not of architects themselves.' The result of his idea has influenced the different exhibitions inside an exhibition, sometimes connected one to each other, sometimes out of context. In any case, the title 'common' apparently 'common' has been able to promote different interpretations.
For those of you who are still imagining the Biennale as a single space, where a collection of projects are showed, I will suggest to get a comfortable pair of shoes before visiting. First of all, the Biennale is an event, it is an explosion of energy in a postcard city and especially during the opening days you must have the gift of omnipresence. The main part of the exhibition is located in a remote piece of Venetian land almost outside the common tourist route. Castello, the normally quite neighbourhood where Giardini and Arsenale are located, is a very good example how the introduction of a big event can shake the city. There are 55 Pavilions, one for each participating nation. In Giardini, the pavilions are very recognisable, everything
Figure 2. OMA, AMO © Andreas Faoro
The Venice Biennale (La Biennale di Venezia) – currently presided over by Paolo Baratta – has for over a century been one of the most prestigious cultural institutions in the world. Ever since its foundation, it has been at the forefront in the research and promotion of new artistic trends. In Venice, it organises international events in the field of the contemporary arts that are amongst the most important of their kind in the world. www.labiennale.org
Figure 3. HSBC bank, Hong Kong © Andreas Faoro
was designed by native architects starting from 1907. In Arsenale more countries are hosted next to a long linear parade of models, photos, installations and videos in a real “common ground”. Sprawled around Venice the collateral events take place, dispersed but not less important, an incentive to visit the city following the exhibitions route. Therefore, there are different locations for each country with differing backgrounds and interpretations of the theme “Common Ground”. • Let us start the tour.
Eliasson, with his latest uncommon experimental installations on the theme of light. But also to take a look at the work of famous architects for example the organic, maybe common, forms of Zaha Hadid, the commonly celebrated Shard London Bridge by Renzo Piano, or the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank by Norman Foster. It is impossible of course to cite all the suggestions that 'Common Ground' offers, but for those who are curious about what 'common' means I would suggest some focus points:
"For those whom are still imaging the Biennale as a single space where a collection of projects are showed, I will suggest to get a comfortable pair of shoes before visiting. "
To welcome visitors to the Central Pavilion in Giardini, the controversial installation 'The Politics of Housekeeping' by Alison Crawshaw is used. She shows the history of the regulatory plans of Rome and the triumph of the building resulting “abusiveness”. Next to that there is the brick installation of Kuehn Malvezzi, with Candida Hofer and Armin Linke, who immediately introduces us to the theme of materiality in architecture, including images of monuments such as Machu Picchu. But there is also space for the 'invisible' Venice. Like in the exhibition by the architect Mario Piana, who patiently recovered through the restoration of its monuments such as the Church of Miracles. In the same way, OMA offers an interesting installation on the contribution of public buildings of 'unknown' architects. The Biennale is also a place to get inspired by contributions of artists such as Olafur
Made in Athens
The exhibition 'Made in Athens', commissioned and curated by Panos Dragonas and Anna Skiada focuses on the particular dynamic of Athens during a period of economic meltdown. The curators explain, 'contemporary Athens is a city of strong contradictions. It is a city whose particular identity was shaped during post-World WarII reconstruction. A city, which has at its disposal an exceptionally talented cadre of young architects, international in orientation, well educated and with a wealth of professional experience. It is, however, the city that was most stricken by the current economic crisis. Currently the Athenian urban space is decomposing and there are increasingly frequent and greater disruptions of the social web.' The Greek Pavilion adresses this idiosyncratic Athenian urbanism within two themes. The first is on the evolution of the Athenian 49
Figure 4. Crimson © Andreas Faoro
apartment building or polykatoikia from 1950 to the present day. The second is on the fragmentation of and disputes over Athenian public space, focusing on counterbalancing complementary urban forces. • Un-mediated
'Un-mediated Democracy demands Un-mediated Space', interprets the topic of common ground by directly asking the protagonists of those collective conflicts how they imagine a common future across and beyond market or state, private or public mediation. The 'desires, constrains and potentials expressed in these sites of conflict' are a part of the wider wave of international protests that are demanding a real direct and un-mediated democracy. The demands, gathered on the ground through a series of investigative interviews, form the basis for a possible planning strategy, while their resistance tactics become patterns that could shape a common territory.
intimidating world of urban policies, in fact: 'Crimson invites the architect to think about what each city should minimally provide, what each city should at least mean for its inhabitants, and which contribution architecture could make to any city. We want architecture to re-engage with the banality of urban planning, as a force for good'.
To conclude, Paolo Baratta (Biennale director) presented the Common Ground exhibition as a warning, '…to help architects emerge from the crisis of identity they are going through, and at the same time offering the public a chance to look inside architecture, make it familiar and discover that something can be asked of it, that something different is possible, that we are not condemned to passive acceptance. Civil society is made up of individuals and institutions. These do not always seem capable of identifying the requirements for organizing the space we live in. In order to mend this fracture, la Biennale can make its contribution primarily by posing these as its themes. While not denying that there is a problem in the relationship between architecture and ecology, architecture and technology, and architecture and town planning, the crux is to mend the fracture between architecture and civil society'. These suggestions may seem trivial and obvious but refer to some discussions we had during the recent past lectures: are we not working and studying the same Common Ground? Thus: what means Common ground for you?
• The Banality of Good
The exhibition curated by Crimson Architectural Historians, titled ‘The Banality of Good: can we build New Cities that reflect our values?', shows a series of cities planned and built in the post-war period until the present day. It is a multiple interpretation of the sacredness of an architectural practice that produced the urbanity in which we live. An immersive, panoramic evocation of these cities, showed in a much interpretative way as a loud call to order, directed at the architectural community to re-enter the 50
Figure 5. Peter Fischli & David Weiss © Andreas Faoro
Graduation list Arnts, P.G.
Growing Future Haiti: Integrating emergent spatial demands into a community-supportive Post-disaster development strategy
Visible Cities: Home in the City
ReCYCLE City: Strengthening the bikeability from home to the Dutch railway station
Bedoya Ruiz, A.M. Access to the city for everyone: Spatial and planning strategies to counteract residential segregation in Bogotá
Boelsums, R.S. Living next to flagship development
Hemmati, N.B. Towards Regional Synergy: Potentials for polycentric development in Tehran Metropolitan Region (TMR)
Janssen, M. Zandvoort: A new touristic leisure dune landscape
RE InfraStructured: Urban regeneration by integrating infrastructural residual space
Shifting trajectories: Construct Urban Strategies to Restructure Mumbai’s Main Centralities and their Functional Relationships to Facilitate the Development of Metropolitan Hinterlands
Maintaining the waterfront in Vlissingen: Restitching the relationship between water and the urban fabric
Briet, G. Recognizing Synergetic Conditions for Cohabitation: Proposing an Alternative Method for Acknowledging Local Level Potentialities into the Municipal Decision-Making Process
Cremers, H. The SuikerUnie towards a creative future: A gradual and flexible strategy for the site in Groningen towards a creative based urban development
De Koning, R.E. reInheritance: Shaping the future of the historic inner city of Amsterdam
De Kort, R.P.J. Prepare for Impact! Climate Change Adaptation and Spatial Quality in the Dutch Urban Delta
Den Besten, N. Towards an open delta: Research and design for sustainable urban landscapes in an open Dutch Southwest Delta
Deng, S. Post dam era: New water defense system of Haringvliet
Feng, J. Opening the besieged city: Exploring an inclusive development strategy for Tin Shui Wai in Hong Kong
Golchehr, S. Is integration and empowerment of the excluded needed?
Grubic, T. Belgrade Meeting its Riverfront: A strategic spatial plan that articulates and consolidates the city of Belgrade and its Riverfront through a typological design
2nd Connection and a spatial design for Helsingør
Konings, V. Can Tho, how to grow? Flood proof expansion in rapidly urbanising delta cities in the Mekong delta: the case of Can Tho
Lee, S.H. Working with Extremes: Hard or Soft approach? 2100 Vision for settlements on the southern bank of Rotterdam: The case of Pernis
Li, L. Integration Across Railway: Integrate the Backside Surrounding of Xi’an Central Station to the City as a Whole and Towards the Historic Urban Center
Li, T. Eco city, eco transport: Urban regeneration in Arnhem central south
Machedon, E. Your Home’s Check-In Gate: Spatial Planning Strategies for the Urban Integration of the Development Driven by Amsterdam Schiphol Airport
Schoo, A.J. Vibrant space / Problem space: Improvement of public spaces in Dutch underprivileged housing areas to increase social cohesion and safety
Skachokova, A.K. Public space not for sale! A public space regeneration strategy
Stobbe, A. New Town Regeneration: Inwards expansion as a tool for the regeneration and growth of Almere
Stukas, D. A Project For Valencia: Strategy for revitalizing socially vulnerable areas, capturing the benefits of large urban projects
Tutert, T.S. A different approach... A new form of the urban design and the role of the urbanist in area development in The Netherlands
van Dijk, R. Green Belts Revisited: Rethinking and reconfiguring the spatial relationship of city and its adjacent countryside in north west European metropolitan regions
van Klooster, K.I.M. Het creëren van stedelijk water: Het effect van watersystemen op de flexibiliteit in het stedenbouwkundig ontwerp binnen de Masterplan fase
van Vuurde, L.A. Understanding Agglomeration: A critical appraisal of agglomeration theories from the perspective of Rotterdam’s Central District
A better city life: More urban green
Light plan - space for people: A public space strategy towards a 24 hour vitality and sociospatial integrated inner city for Brussels
Delfzijl 2030: WADerPROOF
The urban energy transition
Bangkok Synergy: A synergetic spatial vision to preserve Bangkok heritage, integrated with rapid mass transit system
Landscape Perception: A spatial design strategy for Dongeradeel, Friesland
Achieving a balanced network
Towards a Green Metropolis: Designing a waterfront in Riga, Latvia
Ruijs, T. Planning a self organizing city: Flexible planning and design for a durable urban regeneration
New town modeling: Reviewing Dutch new towns via quantitative methods to provide appropriate tools and strategy for accelerating Chinese new town development 51
Urbanism in new technologies
Marthijn Pool founder of space&matter Michiel de Lange Founder of the Mobile city Otto Trienekens Veldacademie
Interview with Marthijn Pool, Michiel de Lange and Otto Trienekens
The topic of urbanism week, Second hand cities, considers the new assignments that we as professionals will face. One significant change that we are seeing is the rise of social media and other technologies and their use by citizens. The role of new digital technologies, social media and their influence that they will have urbanism remains unclear. We took the opportunity of Urbanism week to ask three of the presenters who are all working with new technologies about these issues: Marthijn Pool, Michiel de Lange and Otto Trienekens.
How do you see the act of city building shifting through the use of digital
Marthijn Pool, co-founded
space&matter, an office for architecture, urban strategies and
The increase of information and communication technologies has made individuals more independent. Independent from each other in social terms, but also less dependent from space. Independent from where we are, we can communicate and ‘survive’ in the urban, metropolitan and global context. Discussions around the topic question if this level of independence has detached us from our surroundings. At space&matter we rather see this development as an opportunity to actually build a stronger relation with space and place. Because of the omnipresent information, communication and technology getting to know and understand the meaning of space becomes easier and more appealing. A higher level of understanding provides a higher level of appreciation. The same is true for the interpersonal relationships. People have indeed become more independent, but it has not made them more individualised, as some might state. On the contrary, we judge that the level of connectivity has risen. The way we relate and connect has changed though. Discussion might be around the qualitative aspects of these social network relations, but from a quantitative aspect there is no doubt. Also, here we see social networks as an opportunity to improve the appreciation of cities. What if your social network could be part of your physical environment and vice versa?
concept development. Michiel de Lange (PhD), is the co-founder of The Mobile City, an independent research group that investigates the influence of digital media technologies on urban life and implications for urban design. Otto Trienekens, owner of Vertex architectuur en stedenbouw researches on GPS-tracking for redevelopment of the innercity.
All three have been working on
from a different perspective or background.
We are constantly asking ourselves if the point of departure would be the social network itself for providing an Interest Based Urbanism. The internet has developed itself mainly around the topic of common interest in the past decade. Enthusiasts and like minded people flock together and embed themselves in social networks where they feel ‘at home’. Marthijn Pool
Figure 1. (dis)connected © Marthijn Pool
“people no longer naturally accept that experts are making decisions for them from above” – Michiel de Lange Figure 2. Technology in the urban environment © Michiel de Lange
City making to me is more than just creating physical interventions in urban space. It is a mode of spatially organizing diverse relationships that span across many domains, including the economy, natural and social life, culture and politics. Clearly, new media technologies have a profound influence on these relationships. Everyday spatial practices like working, dwelling, travelling, spending leisure time and meeting in public spaces are rapidly changing. For example, many people nowadays work on mobile devices in coffee bars, meet through social media, and interact with urban infrastructures via rfid cards. As a consequence, city builders need to take those changing situations, behaviours, and preferences into account. Urban designers can neither ignore this, nor should they simply cater to the whims of the technology-du-jour. Instead of feeling threatened and ‘losing ground’, they have to critically engage with those new techno-spatial practices in order to help shape them. The profession itself changes too. Architecture currently not only faces a severe economic crisis but - like many other professions - a crisis in expert knowledge and (political) legitimacy. In this age of participatory media culture, professional-amateurism, hacker ethic, wisdom of crowds, and so on, people no longer naturally accept that experts making decisions for them from above. The influence of digital media on city building is not only technological but also a matter of fostering new attitudes. What can the expert do? In line with the adage ‘never waste a good crisis’, urban professionals must explore new processes and models that draw on the strengths of online culture to involve people in the design of cities and in solving the many complex issues which cities today are facing. Urban designers need to draw on their own strength of being able to deal with complex processes at the intersection of the spatial and the social. At the same time they have to look outward and start to collaborate with media makers and researchers to get a better grasp of rapid changes in the media city. Michiel de Lange Since city building is mainly about re-inventing the existing town, it is becoming more and more a complex assignment of very precise interventions on the (micro)scale level, a good understanding of the real behaviour and demands of inhabitants, but also about appreciation, use and maintenance, can be facilitated by the use of digital collaborative technologies. An extra advantage of GPS-technology is delivered by the fact that differences between actual behaviour and perception can be addressed. The reach of digital technology gives a designer the possibility to validate in every phase of a design process the acceptance of a spatial proposal. Users become part of the development instead of spectators, which ensures the durability of a plan. Otto Trienekens
Figure 3. (dis)connected © Otto Trienekens
How do you implement your vision of working with these new collaborative technologies in your practice? Can you briefly describe one of your projects that illustrate this process?
Knowing peoples interests has never been easier. Connecting to people and embedding them in the design and development process is still an opportunity which has not been developed much. At space&matter we have developed several visions and strategies around the concept of incorporating inhabitants/ users in an early stage in the process. Our goal is to make architecture more socio-cultural specific as opposed to developments based upon assumptions, as we have experienced in the past two decades. In order to do so we have to redefine the design process and actually design the process itself. space&matter develops methods and strategies to make an Open Process resulting in specific architecture and an Open City. Marthijn Pool Figure 4. Tools © Marthijn Pool
“Knowing peoples interests has never been easier” – Marthijn Pool
Figure 5. Templot © Marthijn Pool
The Mobile City, the research office for new media and urbanism that I founded with Martijn de Waal, has developed a method to use digital technologies in the process of city-building. Examples of this method are the ‘Social Cities of Tomorrow’ workshop that we organized in February 2012 with ARCAM and Virtueel Platform (www.socialcitiesoftomorrow.nl/workshop), and the ‘Designing for Ownership’ workshop we did in Moscow in July 2012 at the Strelka Institute. We bring together urban stakeholders (municipalities, housing corporations, entrepreneurs, developers, cultural institutions, and so on) and creative young professionals from various disciplines to collaboratively work on complex urban issues. We use media technologies at various stages in the process. This includes for example, gathering new data through digital methods, to mobilize networked publics, as a co-creation platform in the design process, to test prototypes, as a way to raise money through, crowdfunding, integrated into the actual intervention, and for maintenance. With these workshops we bring together professionals who normally would not so easily collaborate, for instance, a housing corporation and media artists. In addition to exploring the potential of digital media for more social cities, it is therefore also a way to create new business models for young urban designers. Michiel de Lange
The Assisted Living Area provides in the possibility for people to live as long as possible and as independent as possible in their own neighbourhood. Accessibility of buildings, public space, ergonomics, infrastructure and mobility are important physical themes to address. Though the quality of life, up to a large extent, is determined by the opportunity to meet other people to interact and to build social networks in the area. Therefore, while re-designing the city into assisted living areas it makes sense to think about enforcing the changes to meet when placing new functions and buildings. In order to decide about it one needs to get good understanding of the actual behaviour of people. By using GPS-technology the movement patterns of inhabitants are recorded and – unexpected - meeting places will appear. When knowing more about the motivation of people of meeting in those places, in the meantime making use of interview techniques and questionnaires, and having a thorough knowledge of the existing living area by making use of integral area analysis techniques, a designer can start drawing new functional programmes validated by direct user input. One could argue this way of working shows one of the most direct ways of user participation in a development process. Otto Trienekens 54
What difficulties do you see for using these technologies (such as exclusion due to limited access to the technology) and how can these issues be addressed?
For implementing the above strategies we see online tools and technologies as an extension to our common means of organizing the Open Process. They don’t replace, but rather enhance existing models. Usage and development of online tools and methodologies do provide us with efficient means to communicate with a large number of individuals, while maintaining the level of efficiency needed to provide architecture within time and budget. Marthijn Pool
Figure 6 Glimpses © Marthijn Pool
"By the time your building is finished, the technologies and media you wanted to integrate into the design probably have been superseded by next generation devices and platforms." – Michiel de Lange Difficulties are many so I will limit myself to naming just a few. Having access to technologies is one, as is knowing how to use them in beneficial ways (often called ‘media literacy’). Makers always need to consider what media are appropriate for the people you are working with. A major challenge for urban designers is the speed differential between technological and urban developments. By the time your building is finished, the technologies and media you wanted to integrate into the design probably have been superseded by next generation devices and platforms. To avoid the risk of obsolescence, urban designers need to make viable longterm strategies to. integrate media technologies in their practice on a far more profound level. See also the two points below. Another risk is focusing on overly simplistic interventions. For example, changing working patterns would mean installing power plugs, ubiquitous Wi-Fi and semi-private working cocoons. Mid- and long-term relationships between technologies and cities have proven to be much more intricate than that. Thorough background knowledge of the history of this relationship is needed to oversee and help shape the future of the media city. In the end, urban design involves asking philosophical questions about the good city. Do we want to live in cities that are pushed toward efficiency, security and personalization? Do we favour meeting and engaging? How do our choices for certain interventions influence the culture of cities? Michiel de Lange Providing people with GPS- trackers delivers major privacy issues. Many, especially elderly people and those with little education, do not accept the fact that their entire behaviour pattern is being recorded. To find a representative group of respondents seems a vulnerable exercise. Probably, within a thorough research process, one should decide to use multiple research techniques to produce a good analysis. The fact that people adjust their behaviour while realising they are carrying a GPS device cannot be denied. Implementation of good control questions when interviewing and working with a large number of respondents could limit the change of distortion of the research output. Otto Trienekens Tess Stribos and Andrew Reynolds
The need for communication
Amanda Walter Walter Communications Holly Berkley lecturer at San Diego State University
Interview with Amanda Walter and Holly Berkley
What does it mean to tell the story of landscape architecture? Of design, generally? And what about the stories behind the designs of all of the projects underway worldwide? The aftermath of a great project can unfortunately be a resounding silence: the metaphorical gates open, the space is unveiled, the construction teams leave the site, and then a few leaves fall. When people use new spaces and places
Landscape urbanism (dot) com
in the urban setting, how do we tell the story of the creation of landscapes beyond
seeks to provide a platform for
launch day? Beyond signage? About the designers, architects, planners and people
students, academics, practitioners
behind the projects?
and enthusiasts to participate in
In this interview, I join Amanda Walter and Holly Berkley, co-authors of the recently
the ongoing dialogue and debate
released book, Social Media In Action, to talk about the need for communication in
around the term and concept of
landscape architecture and how the increasing prevalence of social media tools–such
landscape urbanism. Landscape
as blogging, Twitter, Facebook and more–are helping the architecture, engineering
urbanism is a mode of thinking
and planning industry change the way we communicate.
about the design and functioning of cities that uses landscape as the lens by which cities are both
What do you see as the role of storytelling and communication in landscape architecture?
Unfortunately, landscape architecture can be invisible to lay people. This may be the profession’s biggest struggle. If landscape architects don’t tell the stories of their projects – drawing attention to the design and intention of the space – no one else will. Your designs can’t speak for themselves when the public attributes their authorship to God. For landscape architecture firms, your narrative is what will open the public’s eyes to your work. Today, telling and sharing stories couldn’t be easier and digital formats are great for visually rich topics like design. Social media loves visual content. Videos are shared more frequently and posts (whether on a blog, on Facebook or LinkedIn) with striking images attract more readers. Once you start telling your stories in social media, your readers will let you know (like, share, comment on, etc.)
the content they like the best – pay attention to what content engages your audience and you’ll hone your story telling skills.
understood and shaped. The website is comprised of three main sections: an online journal, a visual library of projects—and an ongoing
What excites you about the future
of landscape, architecture, and engineering?
This website is about interrogating,
There is so much about our future that will be determined by these professions. From the rethinking and rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure–like San Francisco’s new eastern span of the Bay Bridge’s that includes a 15’ cantilevered bike and pedestrian lane or the Highline’s game changing reuse of a New York elevated railway–to addressing climate change by designing and building smarter, walkable, park-filled and transit accessible cities and suburbs. Social media can help advance public acceptance and even drive demand for high-quality design in our cities – and even the smallest firm can affect these shifts. PlaceMakers is a 7-person
challenging and opening up dialogue for new and diverse interpretation of the theory, expression and potential of landscape urbanism and its relevance for the contemporary urban project. We seek to promote ongoing conversation among design professionals, clients, educators, public participants, students, artists, writers, and others interested in the design and configuration of the built environment. By providing a webbased platform, we aim to create a transparent and accessible format for dialogue and critique.
urban planning and design firm that uses its PlaceShakers blog and Facebook page to embrace the myriad of public stakeholder types through a dialogue about great communities. Theirs is an excellent example of how firms can create a real following of clients and influencers by talking about what the topics that they can relate to. These tools effectively promote the firm even though PlaceMakers doesn’t use them to promote themselves directly. What are some of the new trends in design that are exciting to watch?
We have been really interested in watching how designers are tracking personal technology use to see how this may impact the future use of spaces and facilities. In some ways, personal technology may be making us more anti-social than we used to be, but clever designers seem to be finding ways to draw us out of our shells – by creating spaces that require our attention and encourage us to connect with the physical world. West 8’s the billowing structures and outdoor sound system at Miami Beach Soundscape Lincoln Park that has made the symphony accessible to everyone. Our built environment can remind us that despite our involvement in rich virtual communities, we have wonderful real communities worth investing our time and energies in as well. Also cities like Greater Des Moines, Iowa where technology is making the public want to participate thanks to Sasaki’s gamified tool 'Design My DSM.' You co-authored the recently published book, Social Media In Action. When did the idea for this book come about?
At the beginning of 2011, I [Amanda] was approached to write a book on social media for the AE industry and I immediately called Holly to see if she would collaborate with me. Holly has been working in online marketing for several years (she’s written two books on the topic), so she adds a deeper analytical understanding of social media to my practical experience with including social media as a part of programs I’ve built with my former firms and my clients. Ultimately, we wanted to write a book that wasn’t necessarily a how to, but instead one that would help firms explore why they would use these tools and how an objective-driven program can be an asset to their communications. We do this by showing real cases of firms that have built a social media presence that supports their practice.
What role does social media take in sharing the stories of landscape architecture and urbanism? Are firms “missing out” by not using social media? Or should we not be so quick to jump on the bandwagon?
Most firms are still trying to find their voice. This is a rare moment in time when the potential of these tools is not yet known. These tools can effectively level the playing field. Small firms with big ideas have just as much access to publishing and circulating these as the biggest firm with the most resources. It requires creativity and a commitment to investing the time required. Once social tools become as ingrained in our normal communication as email is today, the opportunity to stand out and to do something no one else has done will be much more difficult. This doesn’t mean firms should go start a blog, a Facebook page and a Twitter account right away, only to let them go dormant next month. Firms need to invest in their approach wisely. Build something that supports the intellectual brand and ambition of your firm. Most importantly, firms need to commit to a sustained program and practice patience as you gradually grow a loyal audience by putting thoughtful content out there and engaging with others. Social media takes time. How can firms encourage innovation and leadership in times of uncertainty?
These are times to explore new ways of working, winning work and promoting the firm. Trust in the good people that you hire. Look internally for potential leaders. Listen to their ideas and invest in the strong ones by letting your staff explore them. Your best people can represent the firm as examples of the quality of expertise you bring to projects. Encourage them to engage in the many professional online communities and groups like Land8Lounge, Architizer, or the LinkedIn Groups related to professional organizations. Let them share what they know. The gains in their own personal reputation will also reflect well on the firm.
Sarah Kathleen Peck
This article has been published earlier at the landscapeurbanism blog on June 7, 2012. This contribution is part of an exchange project between Atlantis and Landscape urbanism blog.
Fieldstudy in Rotterdam
Education as key to innovation in urban renewal
Otto Trienekens, Jurrian Arnold, Pieter Graaff Veldacademie
The south of Rotterdam has been the playground for numerous design studies by students for the last decennia. First, the modernistic expansions were the object of study, like Pendrecht and Zuidwijk, and then came urban renewal with interesting projects like the ‘Simons Terrein’ in the neighbourhood of Feijenoord. In the nineties, this changed to the redevelopment of the old harbour sites like Kop van Zuid as popular graduation projects. In today’s urban questions however, the task for spatial intervention is not clear anymore. In improving the existing city, with an ever more heterogeneous population, it is hard to find out what the actual design assignment is. This poses the question on how students will find new relevant design assignments and how they are equipped by current educational programs, to deal with new situations in their future field of practice.
Looking to the area of Rotterdam South, the urgency of determination where spatial design is most needed is eminent. The stacking of social, economic and physical problems is qualified as ‘un-Dutch’ in the report ‘Kwaliteitssprong op Zuid’ (Deetman & Mans 2011). This gave national attention to the problematic climate in Rotterdam South. In the following charter Zuid Werkt! the need for renewal or replacement of 35,000 houses and surrounding public space is stated for the next twenty years (Gemeente Rotterdam 2011) to drastically improve the livability. With two thirds of the housing stock in private hands and no budget to support this arduous task, it is unclear which houses will be renewed, when and by whom. This threatens the improvement and maintenance of basic qualities in housing, public space and amenities. While at the same time broader societal issues are having their impact on the living conditions of many Southerners as well. Due to the ageing of the population a growing group of senior residents is demanding different things form there living environment than the younger generation. Professional institutions acknowledge also that todays complex set of conditions mean that conventional spatial development programs do not apply anymore. Already before the financial crisis it was clear that new policy was needed for a durable regeneration
of South, this resulted in the program Pact op Zuid in 2006 (KEI n.d.). In the same period, the new ‘area-based’ approach to policy making was installed in order to provide more integral and coherent answers for specific problems in the neighbourhoods. Therefore, the municipality of Rotterdam decided to experiment with area-based knowledge centres. Fieldacademy studies the metropolitan context through interdisciplinary fieldwork and generation of cross-links in the complex structure of social,
In order to form a balanced representation of the area, different monitors published by the municipality are incorporated, such as Social Index and Safety Index. To be able to generate more dynamic maps at the moment data is converted into a GIS based structure. This article aims to show the necessity of identifying the next steps for urban development in Rotterdam south through an interdisciplinary and interactive approach in studying the urban environment. All projects describe opportunities and difficulties in realising the connection between education and research to policy and implementation. The cases will show how projects can be started with nontraditional stakeholders and how the interests of current inhabitants can be integrated in a design process. The urban problems Rotterdam South is facing are not unique to this specific area. Similar issues can be found in all major cities in the Netherlands. Effective strategies and methods developed in this context will probably also apply in other urban areas.
“ The aim is to develop living environments where specific groups, like the elderly and people with a disability, can live as independent and as long as possible in their own homes.”
economical and public questions. Students and researchers operate from a visible location in the research area, thus providing the possibility of interaction with inhabitants and other stakeholders. Fieldacademy maps the characteristics of the neighbourhood and its inhabitants aiming to obtain insight for all local players and other parties in town.
• Assisted living areas providing means of qualitative input
The municipality of Rotterdam is developing sixteen so called ‘assisted living areas’, including a substantial amount in Rotterdam South. The aim is to develop living environments where specific groups, like the elderly and people with a disability,
Figure 1. Movement patterns of inhabitants based on GPS-tracks © Veldacademie
can live as independent and as long as possible in their own homes. The lead question is to what conditions these areas should meet in order to secure the quality of life and independence of those groups. This requires thorough insight in local lifestyles, needs, and context. Since this is unknown territory for parties within municipality and other stakeholders, the need for an open and innovative way of exploration is necessary. The creative way of presenting design in combination with specific education, can be powerful and effective. Qualitative research allows us to penetrate the perception of the everyday life of resident’s wishes, needs and appraisal can be displayed. During the past years several research methods have been practiced in collaboration with academic students and staff, and knowledge institutes. The change on social encounter and quality of meeting places is researched by means of observing inhabitants in their daily use of neighbourhood and facilities. Master students of TU Delft (Urbanism On Track) literally followed a group of elderly residents in Oud-Charlois around the clock, making use of GPS devices. Movement patterns of the elderly where analysed on various aspects of importance for the development of an assisted living area. The collected patterns are imported into the GIS-database of the municipality of Rotterdam in order to analyse correlations with different aspects such as safety and design of public space. During the research, students were supported by a group of elderly from the area. The analyses resulted in a toolbox for determining the quality of various meeting places in the neighbourhood. In addition,
several scenarios for further development of the area were explored. Results and recommendations of this research are presently used in redevelopment of the area. In another area qualitative research is executed making use of the ‘Visual Incentive Method’ (VIM). The research method concentrates on photographs taken by respondents themselves. While making pictures respondents are forced to think about aspects that are of great importance in their direct living environment. The outcome provides relevant questions in face to face interviews between inhabitant and student. In addition, this method offers the possibility to think about topics out-front. The research is performed in collaboration with TNO and students of the Hogeschool Rotterdam. Several recommendations that are validated by this method are transformed into policy goals, and are presently turned into social and spatial interventions. In collaboration with the Erasmus Medical University the method of ‘action research’ is being used. Based on interviews, observation data, and quantitative data walking routes are being designed. Walking groups are organized in order to test the relationship between the design of the physical public space, movement behaviour by the elderly and health condition. Thus, the interventions which are part of the research are of direct benefit to residents. The aim is to establish sustainable activity. The method of ‘Community Based Design’ (Freudental, Faculty of Industrial Design, TU Delft) is executed to answer the question of how local volunteers, professionals and inhabitants (elderly) can communicate in a convenient way. Can a get together also be virtual? How can we connect the demand and offer in an area? Students of the faculty of Industrial Design, TU-Delft, inhabitants and neighbourhood-professionals recently cooperated in a workshop structure, working towards design solutions that should result in a viable product. By means of European funding, a prototype is being produced of one of the design proposals. Within the described processes of application and developing new methods of qualitative research, an additional advantage is delivered by the fact that students in general happen to have an easy acceptance in communication with respondents. Especially elderly people feel a responsibly to transfer their knowledge and expertise to the younger generation. Participating in the qualitative research, as such, is regarded as giving means to one’s life as a senior. • Gouwplein as test-case for co-creation
Figure 2. Co-creation of inhabitants, students and professionals © Fieldacademy
Figure 3. Visualisation of input inhabitants meeting ÂŠ Veldacademie
Public space can be important for the social networks of elderly, as it is vulnerable to misuse and criminality. This is strengthened by the lack of maintenance. Due to the economic down turn, budget cuts in maintenance of public space are inevitable and cost effectiveness is leading. Even when residents felt responsible in maintaining adjacent outdoor space, trees are uprooted and fields are paved. Already before the budget shortage, questions were raised on the effectiveness of contemporary design and maintenance of public space. Because of criminal activity and vandalism, â€˜social safetyâ€™ became a reason to take away benches, install cameras and in the case of the Gouwplein, issuing a gathering restraint. Thinking of small housing related squares and playgrounds, potential user driven development and maintenance however, prove effective. The amount of square meters of these spaces will surpass many times the amount of the large public spaces in Rotterdam South. Moreover, the expertise of local residents might come up with other solutions then designers can think of. The Gouwplein reflects this situation in every sense. A centrally situated, but small public space in the neighbourhood of Charlois was used as a public dump and drug dealing corner, although the local government to redesign the place. A bachelor student at Fieldacademy already came across the square and made it part of a strategy to improve the neighbourhood. Therefore, when local residents decided to initiate plans for their Gouwplein, the municipality asked Fieldacademy to coordinate the process in order to use it as a test case. This turned out to be a fruitful coalition between local government, Fieldacademy and local residents. The process enabled students to experience first-hand the division 60
between plan-making, implementation and use of public space. Moreover, managing a process with a manifold of professional and non-professional stakeholders requires other methods for design and communication, for instance, using live drawings at sessions and models made by inhabitants. The aim of the Fieldacademy for participating in the project was to stimulate policy transition in the way the government approaches these initiatives. In order to evaluate and research the rate of success, Fieldacademy collaborated with the study of Governance at the Erasmus University, Rotterdam. The graduate Daniel Otterspeer interviewed every actor involved in the process to determine if goals were met. Establishing the fact that the process resembles a citizen initiative it could be seen as a success that the process was open-ended and susceptible for spontaneous input. Also, a positive factor was the fact that local politicians did not claim the process, but merely supported it. An interesting negative aspect he revealed was that this citizen initiative worked exactly the opposite way to conventional participation plans and therefore met strong resistance at various departments. This often resulted in a lack of information that was needed to make effective decisions by actors in the workgroup. This multidisciplinary research followed after a multi-actor process that resulted in a set of clear recommendations for future user-driven development of public space. Because Fieldacademy is part of the process this can be considered as action-research or learning by doing. Not only a written report can spread the knowledge, also the physical result of the study is there to tell the story.
• Merging Studying Existing Housing Stock
Another example of action-research is the project ‘merging’. Organised as a set of workshops for different graduation studios, research is done on the possibilities for merging apartments. The surplus value in this research is that it takes place in an interactive process in which different stakeholders (e.g. home-owners, real estate agents, local authorities) are giving input and feedback. The deterioration of the existing housing stock is one of the most prominent issues in the development of Rotterdam South. An effective approach, however, entails more than a mere architectural design can solve. In some neighbourhoods the one-sided supply of houses, in case of size, type and configuration, makes it difficult for homeowners to make a housing-career. Social climbers, residents with rising income and education, often see no other option then to move out if they can afford to do so. Due to the resulting influx on new inhabitants, stable maintenance and adaption to privately owned apartment blocks and family homes is difficult. This is increased by various juridical, financial and regulatory obstacles that prevent homeowners to take initiative. Moreover, there is a knowledge gap regarding the possibilities in adaption of the existing housing stock and the financial and social return. Due to the lack of knowledge developers, corporations and home-owners are inclined to replace existing housing rather than reusing them. However, looking at what home-owners have already done to renew their houses, we discovered that some two-hundred houses were renewed through merging them with adjacent houses, although not visible on the outside. Realising this, the municipality (Stadsontwikkeling) set up a program to stimulate private home-owners to merge their houses, should the opportunity arise. The purpose of the stimulation programme is to achieve a set of tools that facilitates merger of apartments by home owners. This over time should result in a more differentiated and versatile housing stock, offering more choice for existing and new inhabitants. For developing this toolbox a range of models was made in order to test them on feasibility, durability and cost estimation. Successive
groups of students set out in different workshops and worked together with home-owners, local developers and financial experts under the supervision of Henk van Schagen (Van Schagen Architekten). Also the effect on public space and social life in the neighbourhood were studied. Besides designing different prototypes for merging and extending, a strategy for the front and back yard is provided to enhance the identity and value of the neighbourhood. The next step is bringing this knowledge under the attention of local home-owners. The plan is to present this information in an exemplary merged dwelling situated in the neighbourhood. Inside the merged apartment, people can experience first-hand what qualities merging can offer, what the process looks like and which steps have to be taken. Furthermore, the so called ‘Merging Coach’, a municipal official who aims to promote and support the merging of apartments, will use the example dwelling as operating base. The merging of this example dwelling is now taking place and will open in November 2012 for several years. In dealing with the complicated issue of reusing the existing housing stock we see
neighbourhood level while the means for research in regular practise are very limited. The three cases show that prominent questions in urban renewal cannot be answered by one field of practise. The convergence of different disciplines and stakeholders creates the integral perspective needed to understand the issues at hand. Here education provides a special set of conditions that allow for exploration of new fields of knowledge in spatial development and urban renewal, in particular. In the case of assisted living areas, the application of state of the art urban analysis methods in actual situations provides knowledge on three fronts. Firstly, methodological development is validated in practise. Secondly, the students are equipped with new methods and instruments to use in their future practice. Thirdly, the gained knowledge provides results in the area where it is highly needed. This makes the use of scientific methods in practise-based research more socially as well as scientifically relevant. Moreover, the use of design by students is very effective in finding new ways for application of academic methods in exploring new circumstances. As we see in the research to merging existing housing stock, design played an essential role in exploring new possibilities. The manifolds of solution created by design were needed to convince home-owners, developers and even the municipality to consider merging as an option for renewal. All conventional methods ruled out this option. This brings us to the last point, the communication aspect in spatial design and research in urban renewal. As the city is the laboratory for spatial designers, it is of great importance to engage with its actors. Action-research and test-cases have high communicative value to all actors involved. The study of real-time multi-actor process provided insights for government officials involved as well as for the inhabitants. In all cases however, students have a special ability to communicate with local residents and stakeholders creating more trust then with professional parties. In this sense, education is the key in opening new doors to innovation in urban renewal.
“ Spatial development in the existing city needs area-specific knowledge provided both by academic expertise as by local actors.” two important factors in determining its success. On the one hand a very specific knowledge of these houses is needed to come up with technical as well as feasible solutions. Combining different expertise with the broad scope of the students, a vast amount of knowledge is created in short amount of time. On the other hand this knowledge has to be communicated to all possible actors that play a role in the renewal. The communication with home-owners and local developers during the process contributed greatly to this. • Conclusion
The actual need of spatial development during urban renewal is often irregular and unpredictable due to constant economic, social and political changes. Therefore, spatial development in the existing city needs area-specific knowledge provided by both academic expertise and local actors. This knowledge often is not present at
Shifting territory of Terschelling (2)
Landscape Architecture students go with the wind to Oerol festival
Lisanne van Niekerk msc landscape architecture student tu delft
On the Oerol Festival 2012 a group of seven landscape architecture students
The project process: www.
performed their project ‘Feed the Wind’. They created a garden as a staged landscape
in the front yard of the museum for nature and landscape in West-Terschelling.
Further references on www.
The goal was to make visitors aware of the power of the wind and how it is used by
man. The wind is a natural force that created the Wadden islands and makes them a
Jauslin, D (2012) and I. Bobbink
shifting territory. The presence of people on these islands depends on that force but
‘LANDSCAPE MIRROR’ &
people also intervene on the islands to influence the process of shifting.
‘FEED THE WIND’: Teaching Landscape Architecture on Site
“ The goal was to make visitors aware of the power of the wind and how it is used by man.”
at Oerol Festival in the Wadden Sea Lecture & Proceedings (forthcoming) of the 49th IFLA Congress Landscapes in Transition Cape Town 2012
In the first part of the project visitors were led through a maze by sounds of wind, to become more aware of this force around them. In the second part they would walk over a construction of moving elements layed out over a pond. Here they could fill up funnels with sand that they brought themselves from around the island. While they walked the path the people created wind, generated by foot pumps built into the elements, blowing away their sand into the pond. In this way islands were created. The whole garden was showing the formation process of the Wadden islands in an abstract and interactive way. People were generally surprised by this unexpected display of the wind's relevance in the formation of the Wadden landscape. Visitors liked that they were making the landscape themselves (in our fine Dutch tradition) and often went for a second and a third round through the project. For the students it was a great experience to actually develop the project from concept to execution. Lecturer Daniel Jauslin was invited to present this unusual teaching project at the 49th IFLA World Congress in Cape Town, South Africa on September 7th, and said: “The challenge for us teachers was to find the balance between academic education and the artistic and productive reality of the Festival” (Jauslin, 2012). The Festival reality was probably the biggest challenge for the students. Dealing with acute troubles on site, the weather and visitors was something new to experience in a design project. Seeing the project alive, receiving positive reactions, feedback and the enthusiasm of the visitors was a great reward for the students. Participating Students: Nikolaos Margaritis & Lisanne van Niekerk (concept), Marc Souverein, Beatrice Reinbacher, Michiel van der Drift, Roel Muselaers & Anna Ioannidou TU Delft Tutor: Daniel Jauslin Expeditie Oerol Programme Director: Mariska Verhulst
Figure 1. Feed the Wind © Jansje Klazinga
Colofon ATLANTIS Magazine by Polis | Platform for Urbanism Faculty of Architecture, TU Delft Volume 23, Number 2, November 2012 Editor in Chief
Matthijs van Oostrum Editorial team Andrew Reynolds,
Jet van der Hee Editorial Address Polis, Platform for Urbanism Julianalaan 134, 2628 BL Delft Office: 01 West 350 +31 (0)15-2784093 www.polistudelft.nl firstname.lastname@example.org Printer Drukkerij Teeuwen
Atlantis appears 4 times a year Number of copies: 650 Become a member of Polis Platform for Urbanism and join our network! There are three types of memberships, Polis Students, Polis Friends and Polis Professionals. As member you will receive our Atlantis Magazine four times a year, a monthly newsletter and access to all events organized by Polis. See www. polistudelft.nl for more information!
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Palmbout - Urban Landscapes
Movares Nederland, afd. Stedenbouw
This issue has been made with great care; authors
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and editors hold no liability for incorrect/ incomplete
OD-205, Stedenbouw, onderzoek en
information. All images are the property of their
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of all content.
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Maxwan Architects + Urbanist
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Enno Zuidema Stedebouw
Announcements Urbanism Week 2012 Photos and videos of this yearâ€™s Urbanism Week can be found online on www.urbanismweek.nl
POLIS goes to Poland: from Soviet Union to European Union. From 13-17 November we organise a study trip to Poland in association with Kuiper Companions to learn about this fast developing nation that recently hosted the European Football Championship and slowly changes from former Soviet Union state to an important country of our European Union. We will discover all about the influences of history and big events like the Euro 2012 on Polish cities and the climate changes also this nation is facing. We will visit Poznan and Warsaw, where we try to arrange local teachers and students to show us around. A reflection about this trip will be published in the next issue.
New committee and board members wanted for 2013 In January the new Polis Board starts and although some committee members will continue participating during 2013 we are looking for many new people! You are welcome to apply for both the board and committees. There is a small selection of committees: Excursions, Atlantis, Urbanism Week 2013, Lectures, Education, Workshops or Drinks and Diners. If you have a passion for our designed urban environment, exploration of new frontiers of enquiry, want to discuss about the development of the profession in practice or simply have an interest in the social networking with colleagues from the university and practice, we need your input. To participate, please drop a whisper in one of our board membersâ€™ ear or e-mail board@ polistudelft.nl.
Old Atlantis are online After the fire at Architecture we lost our hard-copy archive. With the help of some readers we have started to reestablish a (digital) archive. The first series of old Atlantis magazines is scanned and published online. We have quite some more to go. If you have old copies at home that are not yet in our archive, please let us know so we can expand our online database.
Call for related study associations: get in contact! We would like to get in contact with as many of them as possible and share our knowledge and organize events together. Soon a special Facebook page will be started to unite all boards of related study associations. Please contact us via email@example.com if you want to join this initiative or if you know interesting student associations P O L I S in other cities. A list of study associations already known by us is published on our site.