Bnieuws 51/02 - Beyond the commonplace (2017/18)

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Bnieuws Volume 51 Issue 02 17 October 2017


Contact Room BG.Midden.140 Julianalaan 134 2628 BL Delft


A Place of Potential


Escape from BK City

Editorial Team Nadine van den Berg Matthew Cook Lydia Giokari Ada Jaśkowiec Kseniya Otmakhova


Where at BK ?


Contributors Ola Gordowy


BK 24/7?

Cover BK Tower by Matthew Cook


What about going on exchange?

Editorial Advice Board Robert Nottrot Pierijn van der Putt Marcello Soeleman Ivan Thung Linda van Keeken


The Missing Tools

Next Deadline 7th of November Bnieuws Volume 51 Issue 03



Printed by Druk. Tan Heck 1.350 copies © All rights reserved. Although all content is treated with great care, errors may occur.

(Un)Built Scenarios


We have a New Urban Agenda, and here is what we can do.


BEYOND THE COMMONPLACE Six weeks may be already enough to get familiar with the Faculty, but not sufficient to fully delve into its secrets and peculiarities. The name ‘BK City” itself indicates the vastness of our faculty and that is probably why it takes you almost two years to discover all the hidden spots and passages. Fortunately, this issue is going to introduce you to some of the hidden treasures around our City with the hope that curiosity will lead you to explore this multifarious building that we all spend most of our days in. Once you’ve done that, in the second half, we will also guide you out of BK to the world, because we all sometimes deserve a break. This month, Bnieuws comes out substantially refreshed. We warmly welcome back our former editor, Kseniya, whose return proves that there really is life after exchange. From this issue on, our team will be also supported by our new editors: Ada and her daydreams of the BK at night-time, and Matthew, who will inconspicuously try to lure you into hand drawing. This issue will take you on a trip to wherever you choose to go. In the central fold we challenge you to test your knowledge of BK’s secret spots. You might find the thing you’ve never dreamed of! If you’ve ever wondered what’s hidden inside the BK Tower, our editors Nadine and Matthew went on an adventure to provide you with an answer. In (Un)built Scenarios Ada unravelled the invisible history of our Faculty, looking back on the times of the Great Fire of 2008. Should you have a whim to see some new part of the world, you could start slow from the botanical garden. It just takes three pedestrian crossings if you want to do it legally, or one quick run if you do not wish to comply. To those wondering whether they should take a break from this rainy land – the International Office will provide you with information about how to do it. If you’re still hesitating, Lydia, Martine, Yinan and Arjan, who already went on exchange, will share their experiences and try to talk you into it. However, if they are still not persuasive enough, listen to our dean, Peter Russell, who advices us to open our wings and go far, far away. To those who decide to stay in BK, please make sure you catch up with the latest news Roberto Rocco prepared for you. Will you follow us in BK or across the globe? See you sometime, somewhere!



Exhibition / WANDERLUST This exhibition will showcase the work of the winner of the Sacha Tanja Penning art award 2017: Koen Vermeule. His work has stamped its own unique mark on Dutch contemporary figurative art. Kunsthal / until 19.11.17

Wooncongres / KWALITEIT VAN WONEN EN WIJKEN Het OTB van de TU Delft en Platform31 organiseren voor de achtste keer op rij het Wooncongres. Het thema van deze editie is: kwaliteit van wonen en wijken. Dit is een unieke gelegenheid om in één dag geheel op de hoogte te raken van de belangrijkste toekomstgerichte ontwikkelingen in het wonen. Haagse Hogeschool / 09.11.17


Exhibiton / BIOINSPIRED DESIGN What can we learn from nature? And how can we tackle problems our conventional methods cannot solve? The exhibition ‘Bioinspired – Designing the Surface. Creative Learning from Nature’ shows examples of nature-inspired technology, and explains about the immense potential for future-oriented innovation.

Rondleiding / G Griezel mee tijde Delft in het 16e e Willem van Oran veroordeeld. Er z

TU Delft Library / until 13.11.17

Gevangenis Het St


Seminar / 3D AS KEY DESIGN TOOL The objective of this seminar is to introduce and transfer methods for 3D analysis, visualisation and design used in education. Berlage zalen / 31.10.17 / 13:45 – 17:30

GEVANGENIS HET STEEN ens de rondleiding in de stadsgevangenis van eeuwse Stadhuis. Hier werd de moordenaar van nje gevangen gehouden en ter dood zijn nog originele martelwerktuigen te zien.

teen / 17, 18 & 20.10.17

Cultuur / OPEN ATELIER Wil je graag onderdeel uitmaken van een community van creatievelingen? Verbeter je skills en experimenteer in één van de zeven kunstdisciplines naar keuze. Met het nieuwe Open Atelier-abonnement kun je langskomen om aan je eigen projecten te werken en geïnspireerd te raken door en met anderen. Kunst & Cultuur / elke zaterdag 12:00 – 18:00


Lezingenreeks / ARCHITECTURE AND REPRESENTATION Start van de lezingenreeks Architecture and Representation met e-flux en The Berlage. In zijn lezing Life, Abstraction, Architecture: Notes on the Plan bespreekt architect Pier Vittorio Aureli de geschiedenis en betekenis van het architectonisch plan en neemt hij canonieke voorbeelden onder de loep. Het Nieuwe Instituut, Rotterdam / 19.10.17 / 19:30 – 21:00

Look inside

A PLACE OF POTENTIAL Words Nadine van den Berg

Image Matthew Cook

You pass it every day you visit the Faculty. It greets you as you’re still rubbing the sleep from your eyes at 9am, and again when you go home about eight hours later, tired after working on your project all day. It’s something you see constantly, yet never dwell on. Always there, as a greeting card of our faculty. You’re able to see it from quite a distance too. It’s the BK Tower.

You have seen the tall, brick tower with its characteristic green metal roof, but did you ever take a moment to wonder what’s inside it? What’s hidden in this locked off space in the midst of our faculty? And why our faculty isn’t using this interesting space?


The entrance to the tower can be found on the second floor, near Room X and Y. When the door labelled 03.West.863 was opened for us, a narrow stairway appeared. After reaching the top of the first staircase, your first impulse is to crane your neck and look up towards the many levels of the tower. As you take everything in, an almost eerie quietness surrounds you. There are grey walls, metal stairs and characteristic narrow windows that have colourful lights perched behind them. That’s all there is. After climbing the many narrow stairs you are greeted by a spectacular view of the city centre of Delft, the TU campus and BK City itself. When the staircase finally comes to an end, there is a long ladder that brings you even higher up the tower. But climbing it and peeking into the darkness that’s in the uppermost part, only brings you an odd smell and some flies in your face. It’s too bad the tower is empty. It’s one of the most inspiring, but closed of parts of our faculty. A place of potential. What was initially meant as a water reservoir for the Chemistry Faculty, never found its use in BK City. But perhaps that’ll change in the future. With more and more students joining the BK City community each year, we have to be creative with the space we have at hand. Could there be an opportunity in redeveloping the water tower? There is, however, at least one plan for the near future: to move the nest of a falcon that’s currently living on top of the EWI building to the BK tower.


Take a break

ESCAPE FROM BK CITY Words & Image Matthew Cook

You all know how it feels, sitting in front of the glow of your laptop screen, CAD open, zooming in, zooming out, again, and again. You have already drunk three cups of coffee. Work is going nowhere, You feel frustrated. Your design isn’t what you want it to be. Why did you even pick this stupid course anyway? It’s probably a good point to take a break, go for a walk and give yourself a bit of time to think. Maybe it’s time to go to the Botanical Garden? If you are in need of half an hour’s space it is definitely worth popping over.

You could be forgiven for not knowing about the Botanical Garden, its public face is a modest one, it is turned inwards, hiding its beauty until you walk through its gates. The garden is free to TU Delft students and only minutes walk from the front door of BK City.


As you slowly wander around the garden, through the woods and along the stream, you have space to think. The pressure is reduced. The garden and your project slip in and out of thought. The plants and the landscaping are possible sources of inspiration whilst the ducks swimming about are sources of amusement. It’s also crucially, wonderfully, quiet. No trip to the garden is ever the same. Different seasons bring different aspects to the fore. Currently, the leaves are turning to bright yellows, oranges and reds, dropping from the trees. In a few months, when winter has truly reached us the plants will be all structure, scaffold for the new year. With the spring comes the shock of green as soft new leaves emerge from firm buds. Summer is time to bloom, the leaves dark and heavy, shading from the sun. One constant is the greenhouses. Structurally they could reflect the Crystal Palace, or maybe just a local tomato farm. Inside they are hot, heavy with humidity and thick with plants. The buildings are silent apart from the water bubbling up into fish tanks and the sound of the leaves brushing against your shoulders. The most interesting plants live here, from mangrove trees, to cacti, carnivorous plants with flowers as big as your hand and bushes that shrink before your eyes when you touch them. When you return to your desk you’ll feel better. Maybe nature has inspired you, maybe all you needed was some fresh air and time to let your project percolate, maybe you just had a pleasant break. Whatever happened, it will have been worth the walk. Now, get back to it, you have buildings to design.



(UN)BUILT SCENARIOS Words Ada Jaśkowiec

We are back to the new carpets, smooth floors and shiny orange epoxy. We are well settled here. But it was not supposed to be our permanent house. Nine years ago, when first students entered the Faculty at Julianlaan, TU Delft Hoofdgebouw, was only a temporary location. Four months after the fire, the Faculty issued an open competition to fuel the discussion about possible future development. Can we still draw inspiration from the unbuilt?


Why Julianlaan? May 13, 2008, is the date which probably every BK student has heard about. Flames devoured the former building in Berlageweg, leaving the faculty homeless. Just 6 days later, the BK carried on its educational endeavours in temporary tents nearby the old building. The quest for the new edifice begun. The first selection included 5 locations: TNO building south of the library (3), Kabelfabriek west from the campus (5), Mijnbouwplein (1), which currently is the Science Centre Delft, Greenhouse BK-City (4) in Broekweg opposite the Sports & Culture Centre and TU Delft Main Building in Julianlaan (2). The last two buildings made it further to the final selection. The experimental, innovatory character of the Glass BK City was alluring, but got finally rejected due to possible problems with internal climate quality. The existing building was the last one in the battlefield.

Plan of the campus with all hypothetical locations of post-fire BK. (1-5). Dotted lines mark the locations proposed by 3 winning proposals of the Open Competition.

The beginning of BK City However, this option was not perfect either. TU Delft’s hoofdgebouw was not a welcoming building, but a rough, severe and over-complicated edifice. Conceived as an initiative for new chemistry buildings, it was never used that way. Formerly holding administrative functions, in 2008, it was already undergoing the transition towards residential functions. Moreover, despite being one of the biggest buildings in the Netherlands at the moment of its construction, it provided just 32.000 sqm of usable area. In contrast, the previous building in Berlageweg, designed by Johannes van den Broek and Jaap Bakema, offered 42.000 sqm and even then it was still perceived 25% too small for the needs of the Faculty at that time. The design team decided to implement the favoured idea of glasshouses on the smaller scale by extending the building by another 10.000 sqm, compensating for the scarcity of internal space in the original building.

character of the building. The desired feeling of quick pace and creativity was reinforced by the industrial appeal, creating the appeal of the building under construction, open to changes and modification.

BK is first and foremost an improvised team work, the result of long discussions and compromises. The first collaborator was Job Roos – the architect of the residential building Julianlaan, which was then already well under development. Due to his expertise and extensive knowledge of the edifice, it was possible to start the design right away. Herman Kossmann and Nienke Bouwhuis were responsible for the design of public spaces in the faculty, including the Straat van Bouwkunde. Winy Maas of MVRDV, the Professor at The Why Factory, prepared the design of glasshouse additions. The new programme was investigated by Diederick Fokkema in order to obtain more identity, interaction and flexibility.

The search for new ideas The faculty might have settled well in the newly refurbished building, yet the awareness of the temporality of this situation did not fade away. Four months after the fire, on the September 13, 2008, the Faculty issued an open competition to start the discussion about possible future developments. The aim was to provoke a discussion about the idea of planning university buildings, taking into account the specific situation of the faculty of architecture.

Besides being the functional backbone of the building and the most emblematic internal space, the BK street was introduced as a reincarnation of the very successful ground floor public passage of the former faculty building. While public spaces were finished with neutral colours and materials, the extensive use of colour was introduced to enhance navigation, mark the most crucial spots and soften the institutional

Due to the fact that deficiency of usable space had been a concern to the Faculty already back in 2008, the concept of flexible working pace had already been developed a few months before the fire, which turned to be another positive coincidence. The brief assumed more space obtained thanks to the flexible attitude towards the occupancy of space. Instead of receiving an assigned working spot, students and employees appropriate the space when they currently need it and vacate it when not used. Also, lecture halls, educational facilities and laboratories, as well as conference rooms and a library, were supposedly meant to be shared with other faculties in accordance with the idea of a network university.

The future building was seen as a showcase of innovative and modern spirit of TU Delft, hence sustainability lied well in the core of the future design. At a local scale, the new development was supposed to create tighter internal connections between the TU faculties and external between the TU and the city of Delft. Above that, the jury looked for a visionary project, which would encapsulate immense ambitions for the future BK building. Nevertheless, it was clearly stated that the discussion would belong to a post-starchitecture icon era. The future building was meant to coexist with the surrounding, not to dominate it.



Three designs which won the first ex-aequo prize in Open International Ideas Competition organised by TU Delft. Left: Amalgam, Laura Alvarez, laura alvarez architecture. Middle: A World Without Objects, Gijs Raggers, Gijs Raggers architect. Right: Green-Housed Culture, Marc Bringer & Ilham Laraqui, Laraqui-Bringer Architecture.

Amalgam The design accepts and cherishes the then temporary location by turning the building into a permanent BK City. It diagnoses and fixes drawbacks of the existing edifice - grim, dead-end corridors, lack of clarity in the plan, discontinuous internal circulation – by filling in the existing voids with modern architectural interventions, at the same time doubling the area. It adds flexibility and clarity to the old building, by developing the idea of BK Street and visibly linking it to all public functions. Interaction is enhanced by an extensive exhibition area, which triggers an exchange of ideas between students.

A World Without Objects Questioning the role of an architect in the modern society, the design proposes to reapply the urban design of Rotterdam’s shopping street Lijnbaan in the Mekelpark, therefore breathing new life into the green spine along the campus. Such location tightens BK’s bounds with the rest of the campus. Placed along the 500 m long canyon, the adjacent spaces take the form of cavities excavated in order to accommodate diverse activities. The shape of each excavation corresponds to its function. This very exquisite intervention is marked by the strong presence of a 24-storey tower which accommodates the faculty library.

Green-Housed Culture The concept assumes refurbishment of the old plot in the Berlageweg. Extensive, horizontal edifice reinterprets the typology of a greenhouse, typical of Delft’s surroundings. Clear floor plan with externally placed green patios equipped with modern technology enabling full control of internal atmosphere makes a clear statement of a sustainable, integrated approach, in respect to daylight, waste and energy as well as spatial and social qualities. The edifice is slightly informal, yet modern and innovative enough to fulfil the role of a trademark of TU Delft, being a modern, innovative university.

The competiton Significant amounts of work proposed a design of almost landscape-architectural quality, offering openness and flexibility, seen as an essential feature facilitating creative, architectural endeavours. Another trend was to extend this environment towards other faculties, making the BK a place of social interaction. Some participants also approached the task more as a general discussion about the future of education, anticipating less place-bound and more mobile, or even virtual scenarios. Considering the lack of rigid requirements, the 466 participants came up with various proposals for the location of the new BK building: starting from the Julianlaan and Berlageweg, through redevelopment of the internal campus green spine – the Mekelpark, or scattering the faculty throughout different localisations in Delft, to moving the faculty to Amsterdam or Rotterdam. The three winning projects demonstrated the general tendencies, new directions and most innovative ideas in the most crystallised forms. BK Stay However harsh and temporary the building seemed to be in the beginning, it turned out to be successful up to such point that the decision was made to turn it a permanent home for the Faculty. Such choice meant that it would have to undergo transformations to upgrade it in order to make it serve its purpose for the next 30-50 upcoming years. The second phase of the intervention is called “BK-City Stay!”. During that stage, the most crucial aspect was to improve building’s energy performance to make it more sustainable and effective in regard to indoor climate. The investment was carried out in the years 20122015.

Does it mean that all the ambitions projected onto BK City throughout the process of its refurbishment were fulfilled? Future The existing building is no longer the most exposed university facility. The mediatory function is now shared with Gebouw 2, the Science Centre and the student housing. Despite of the fact that the campus has expanded towards the city and absorbed the BK City, it still feels slightly distant from the rest of the University. Unfortunately, there is also the second level of this isolation. Nowadays, we mostly spend time secluded in our studio spaces. The final crits take place in individual studio rooms, which significantly impedes the exchange of ideas. The Orange Hall, although it emanates the atmosphere of public space, is mostly assigned to particular groups of students, which weakens its integrational capability. At the time when the Faculty is home to 2600 students and a few hundreds of workers, we need to improve our platforms of communication. Exposing your work to hundreds of critics is nerve-wracking, but it helps to overcome the stress, which is inevitable in our future work. I think we need more openness to be able to continuously learn from each other. And this kind of public agora is what I miss most in this otherwise really beautiful building. You can see the model of the old Faculty building in the BK Street near our office. The sources for this article can be found on the online pages 36:

DID YOU KNOW...? The first order of mobile phones, laptops and tents was done already 5 hours after the fire broke out. The whole design phase was wrapped up in 5 weeks. BK City is not symmetrical due to the ownership of the original plot. BK City was made available to students on September 1, 2008, in less than 4 months after the fire. Past predictions prognosed that in 2020, BK would have been home to at least 4500 students, while currently we are slightly over the half of the expected amount.



BK 24/7? Words Ada Jaśkowiec

It’s been only a year, but I have already collected a small glossary of my favourite BK terms: speculate, maybe, future scenario, sharpen, hands-on, investigate, urban plinth, make it more sexy. But the one that will be drillied into my head forever is “what if”? What if BK was open 24/7? I remember the expression of horror on my friend’s face, when she found out that you can never stay at the faculty overnight. Why take away architecture students’ favourite endeavour: boasting about sleepless nights? How BK could look like, if it was open at night?

I approach the building just to have my eyes aggressively picked out by a blue neon happily inviting me inside as if everything was fine, while it is not. Of course. “ArchArchitect-Architecture-Hi!” Climbing the stairs, I pass by a guy litting up his cigarette. Haven’t I seen this guy before? He’s been here forever and it does not feel right. The guard is leering at me from below his swollen eyelids, but lazily turns back to another “Black Mirror” episode. Frail, sleepy whistling is coming from the Print Shop. It’s in minor this time. Luckily, the Espresso bar has never let me down. I sip my coffee and wake up to another Daddy Yankee hit, patiently waiting for my chicken curry panino. The sound of wet flip-flops echoes through the corridor and the smell of toothpaste brings back the memories of my high school summer camps. “No more free beds” – shouts the sticker on the wall. I really envy the guy who managed to take over the Haiti shelter. Despite my genuinely deep reluctance towards making models, I really wish I was an Interiors student – I could just have a nap in one of my blood-stained wonders. Constantly working at its full capacity, the Zuidserre has managed to create its own microclimate. This year, definitely, I am not wearing gloves inside. Really fat spiders inhabit the oldest models. The janitor decided to plant several palms in the corner and they will soon outgrow the ones in the botanical garden. The legend claims that there is a monkey, but it appears just when the moon is at the full and the sky is clear. Buienradar comforts me again: it certainly won’t happen tonight. ... Suddenly, a buzzing sound reminds me to get my panino. But then instead, I wake up to the sound of a default Samsung alarm clock, starving, covered with tracing paper, with coffee spilled all over me. Maybe it’s a good thing that at least BK tries to save me from myself.


In search of a lightbox

THE MISSING TOOLS Words Matthew Cook

The lightbox is a simply named piece of equipment, reflective of the technological simplicity inside. Nothing more than a flat box, it contains the cheapest of fluorescent bulbs, and a translucent board for the tabletop. Yet this simple box of light can transform materials in an instant. Lay upon its top two pieces of paper, one with an image printed onto it, and the other plain, obscuring the picture below. All it takes is one tactile click of the switch and the obscured image reappears before your eyes.


One moment you are Clark Kent, sitting there, seeing normally, stymied by the thinnest sheet of paper. A moment later however, you are Superman, your x-ray vision pierces through to the image below. The hidden drawing is once again before you, glowing with vibrant colour that is impossible without illumination. The sense of satisfaction is immeasurable. A box of bulbs has expanded your visual ability in an instant. Wood, plaster, paper, polystyrene, card, wire, glue. All these materials are available in the Faculty, ready to be used in infinite combinations to create fantastic models that we are quite rightly proud of and show off around our building. The methods by which we can make our models have made a leap with the popularisation of 3D printing, laser cutting and CNC routing, but we carry on using our favourite materials and tools just like our tutors would have in their student days. However, were we to be accused of Luddism, rejecting technological advancement, we would firmly refute this notion. Models made by hand have a quality that we cannot recreate with our digital aides. Hand-made models are valued, and will remain a key part of our creative process. Hand drawing has not had the same recognition as modelling by hand. Students and tutors are all still

using it, from small sketches to enormous drawings. But if we look around the Faculty it is obvious that our two dimensional efforts are undervalued. The permanent display boxes that line our hallways are filled with models, but we rarely see our drawings framed on the walls. We should not accept this state of affairs. Our drawings should be valued just like our models. We should be able to see them throughout our building, to spur on our own representations. Drawing by hand should be seen as a powerful way of portraying a building and its atmosphere. This is not to say that these drawings are ignored or their quality uncelebrated, but that without encouragement and the tools to aid their creation we will not see our best efforts realised. We need to employ these methods, as it will only be our own loss if we do not. If you are looking for a lightbox as I was, Rein Have has installed one outside Room H for everyone to use. We should take him up on the offer. Inside Room H is the drawing studio, where Rein carries the torch for mark making. Inside he teaches the Bachelors how to put pencil on paper and can answer any questions you may have. Go see him. Go draw. Go make something fantastic. I can’t wait to see it up on the Faculty wall.

The newly accessible lightbox, in the corridor between Room H and Lecture Hall A.


WHERE AT BK ? Images Bnieuws



updates on our Facebook page.



For more hidden spots at BK, see









With the first quarter of the year coming to an end, the new students and employees have learned their ways through BK City’s mazes. The BK veterans spot the puzzled outsiders right away, sending them through ‘The Street’ either ‘East’ or ‘West’, to the ‘Orange Room’ or to the ‘Model Hall’. Roaming through the building in search for the sweetest spots, the editorial team found out that a long stay at BK is no guarantee to knowing it all. Stuck in a rut, many of us at the Faculty never leave their daily work environment to explore the many hidden treasures out there. Bnieuws presents a selection of BK’s secret spots, challenging our readers to test their knowledge of the building and to set out on adventures through BK City!


















Sharing memories

WHAT ABOUT GOING ON EXCHANGE? Words & Images Lydia Giokari & Students

In the last issue of Bnieuws, exchange students that visited our faculty last year shared their experiences with the BK Community in an attempt to give some helpful advice to the new exchange students that will spend their coming months in BK City. As a follow-up, Bnieuws approached students that went on exchange abroad last year to also share their memories in one-page reports, in which they gave the titles that best described their exchange.





Describe your exchange experience in three words. Nature, koiene, informative.

Norway. I wish I had this mindset in the Netherlands, since there is so much to explore here as well.

What was the hardest thing to get used to in the country / faculty you went to? What is the biggest difference with BK? University started when it was still summer and the days were long with a lot of sunlight. During winter, days were shorter and in December we only had sunlight for a few hours. The winter in Trondheim with lots of snow was hard to get used to, but also a cool experience. The biggest difference with BK was the size of the university. Architecture did not have its own building and our faculty is way bigger.

What do you miss from the time you spent on your exchange? I already miss all the adventures and beautiful nature. From the place I stayed in Trondheim you could be out of the city within an hour, which was nice if you wanted to have a break from studying.

What do you wish you had known before going on exchange? I wish I had taken a Norwegian course. You can definitely survive with English, but Norwegian people appreciate it a lot if you just know some basic words. Also it was very good that I arranged a student apartment in advance.

Share a picture which is related to your experience of exchange and add a description about why you picked it. It was hard to just choose one picture, but this one is from a cabin/koiene trip at the beginning of November. In Trondheim you can find a lot of student societies. One of them rents out cabins, without electricity and running water. The one in the picture had also a sauna, but we had to chop our own wood for the fire. During this weekend I also did cross country skiing for the first time in my life. I loved these cabin trips with new friends in the nature, because it felt like as a short holiday in the semester.

In what way your experience change your scope? When I was on my exchange, I wanted to experience as much as possible of the culture and nature in

“I already miss all the adventures and beautiful nature�





Describe your exchange experience in three words. Quirky, adventurous, gregarious.

What was the hardest thing to get used to in the country / faculty you went to? What is the biggest difference with BK? CEPT is known for their hand drawn representation and tutors were not very accustomed to my mainly digital 3d working methods, however they gave me the freedom to work as I preferred. But this difference in method gave one of my biggest frustrations–the basic facilities on campus. Printing was only possible in one location–the copy shop, and the modeling workshop was not quite up to par with Fordian production space we have going on here at BK City. Overall, I had to adjust to a very non-Dutch level of patience in order to stay sane between the 13 hour train delays and endless bureaucratic processes. 22

What do you miss from the time you spent on your exchange? Mostly I miss the food and the spontaneity of life at CEPT. Not only did the campus have three in-house restaurants, but there was this huge road filled with street vendors. A bit different from the Sodexo setup we have here in Delft. Also, the faculty was open 24

hours per day. Next to the fact that you would work on your project in studio it was also a place for hanging out after classes. It was even a thing to have studio sleepovers when deadlines started to get heavy. Waking up from a good nap on your desk with your classmates asking if you’re up for chai and breakfast is probably one of my favorite memories of studio culture.

Share a picture which is related to your experience of exchange and add a description about why you picked it. Students organize activities almost every day ranging from sports to musical performances and movie nights. Also, all the major religious festivals are celebrated in traditional manner at campus, that were often outrageously entertaining. On this particular occasion, Krishna Jayanti, we celebrated the birth of Krishna, which goes a little something like this; (1) dig a huge hole in the middle of the school plaza (2) fill it with water which then turns into mud (3) chuck your fellow students into it (4) alternate the mud bath with loud music, dancing and lassi (5) finish it off by climbing one over another and form a human pyramid, allowing the top person to break the pot of yoghurt hanging high from a tree.

“Yes, I would go on exchange again! No ifs ands or buts about it”




Describe your exchange experience in three words. Irreplaceable, unmissable, unrepeatable.

What was the hardest thing to get used to in the country / faculty you went to? What is the biggest difference with BK? I would say the hardest thing was to get used to the size of the university campus. Tsinghua has a campus that is so big as a small city. This is quite different from TU Delft, where we are always integrated into the actual city. But in Tsinghua, you could basically spend all your time on the campus without ever going out–if you would like. Also, Tsinghua university is quite open in the sense that it is very easy to follow courses from different faculties. For example, as an architecture student I also followed courses about terrorism, nutrition and psychology. What do you wish you had known before going on exchange? I wish I would have applied for OV-vergoeding–the Dutch government travel cost compensation!

would definitely advise other students to try Tsinghua university since it is a really special place with good education and a huge group of international students that will make you feel at ‘home’ right away. In what way are you happy to be back? Beijing is a very hectic city, so I am really happy to be back in the serene atmosphere of the Netherlands.

Share a picture which is related to your experience of exchange and add a description about why you picked it. In the picture you can see a very typical Chinese spring festival dinner, which I spent with both my family and the nicest fellow TU Delfter! I picked this photo because it is an activity that is really unique for China and it is a really nice way to feel at home while being in a far away place. When doing an exchange, I would recommend you to ‘say yes’ to as much local activities as possible and step out of your cultural comfort zone.

In what way did your experience change your scope? I got a better image of the Chinese academic mentality: hard-working students, making your parents proud, but also having fun by going out for dinner or secretly turning your dorm room into a hot-pot restaurant. What do you miss from the time you spent on your exchange? Hanging around with friends after dinner on a summer night, on one of the sports fields in front of the dorms. After your experience, would you do the exchange again and would you advise other students to try it? I would not do this exchange again, since all the people that I met would not be there anymore. But I “Say yes to as much local activities as possible”



“Enjoy please the Japan beautifully scenery!!”



Describe your exchange experience in three words. Reality makes no sense.

Why did you decided to stay abroad for 10 months? Although the exchange track is usually just one semester long; I had already set my eyes on doing two. Staying abroad for a mere half year would have been too short to my taste–especially in a country so different from my own. As such, I applied for an extension during my stay so that I could stay over 10 months.


What was the hardest thing to get used to in the country / faculty you went to? What is the biggest difference with BK? Upon entering the laboratory on my first day at 9:00am sharp, there was just one person present. He was asleep on the ground–wrapped in his sleeping bag. I had, of course, accidentally woken him up and then told him I would come back at a later point. What I didn’t tell him, however (but what I did tell myself), was that I vowed never to spend the night at the university. It is good to be devoted to your studies, but the university is not your prison. What do you miss from the time you spent on your exchange? A city like Tokyo has restaurants so numerous you can probably have breakfast, lunch and dinner at different locales every single day of your life; shops seemingly so tiny yet you can spend ages in them, looking for the right tea cup or Kit Kat flavor; countless ever-changing architectural expressions that help shape every plot, street and neighborhood into this dynamic and diverse metropolis. Rijswijk is dull. After your experience, would you do the exchange again? One professor I met mentioned that “every Japanese

person has a pet country”. Although this is largely and peculiarly true, it is not limited to the Japanese only. I suppose I also have something like a pet country to which I will return again and again. Japan hasn’t seen the last of me, nor should it of any of you. In what way are you happy to be back? Returning home from travelling can be a sad ordeal, yet it reminds us of a reality that is not infinite. Instead of feeling melancholic, we should consider it a renewed start in a familiar environment. For me, that means starting the last stages of my time in Delft, which will be a tough but satisfying ordeal. In what way did your experience changed your scope? Living in Tokyo warps a sense of time. People start working late in the morning until midnight, almost every single day. Convenience stores are open 24/7 while public facilities close in the middle of the afternoon. In the vastness of Tokyo it can take an hour to go somewhere for a meeting or drinks, but this doesn’t demotivate you to traverse this borderless metropolis.

Share a picture which is related to your experience of exchange and add a description about why you picked it. This image hung on a wall in the dormitory. Captioned “Enjoy please the Japan beautifully scenery!!”, it welcomed and reminded students of one of Japan’s many peculiarities. An amazing travel experience that everyone at the Faculty should know about? Let us know!


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STUDYING ABROAD? Words & Image Anke Hacquebord & International Office

In November the Study Abroad Week will take place in order to inform all the students about outgoing exchange. During that week, the International Office of our faculty will give several presentations about the possibilities and the reasons to have an exchange semester abroad. Bnieuws talks with Anke Hacquebord from the International Office to give us all the necessary information and guide us through the procedures and the deadlines for application.


Studying abroad for one semester (exchange) will change your life! It is a great experience, which will help you grow in both a professional and social sense. You will improve your language skills and organizational skills while living and studying in a complete different country and culture. You will build an international network and improve your resume; important, as most graduates will work in an international environment, either abroad or in a multinational team in the Netherlands. Finally, going abroad will definitely be lots of fun! As one of our former exchange students said: “Going on exchange was for sure one of the best decisions I have ever made!” What is exchange? The Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment has exchange agreements with universities all over the world. We agreed with those universities to allow a certain amount of students to study for one semester at our faculty and in return they accept a certain amount of students from our faculty to study there for one semester. Why exchange? It is very attractive to study abroad under an exchange agreement, because you only pay tuition fee at your home university and the courses you followed abroad can be added to your ‘transcript of records’ (‘cijferlijst’

in Dutch) at the TU Delft after your return! Further, a lot of host universities help exchange students with the procedures, applying for visa, finding accommodation and so on and in most cases, you can also apply for a scholarship. When? At our faculty exchange is always for one full semester; not longer, not shorter! The length of the semester can however differ per university. You can go on exchange during your minor in your third year. It is possible to follow the full 30 ECTS abroad. So you can study in a different country at a different university without having study delay! You can also go abroad during your master. Depending on the track you choose, you can follow several master elective courses abroad. If you’re an architecture student and you plan your studies well, you could go abroad without having any study delay. For more information about the possibilities in your minor or master, please visit our website. If the exchange doesn’t fit your regular academic programme, you could also consider to apply for exchange as an additional semester. Your grades will then be included in your ‘transcript of records’ as additional credits and you can of course refer to this exchange experience in your resume.

Where? On our website you can find information about our partners. Just click on the continents and find the information. Of course more information can be found on the website of the partner universities. For fast scanning of your options, we publish a list with all partners and the level (BSc/MSc). This list also tells you if a portfolio is required for the TU-BK application. You can find the list under ‘forms & downloads’ on the website. Student travel reports can also help you decide which university should be your destination!

so you are informed well about the possibilities of and procedures for an exchange semester. In addition to our presentations, former exchange students and incoming exchange students will give presentations about their exchange experiences abroad. You’re more than welcome to join this information sessions! Speed date session We will organise a speed date session with former exchange students some weeks later, after you had time to investigate your options for exchange and when you


Convinced? Then read the ‘procedures and deadlines’ and ‘requirements’ sections or our website carefully. Please know that you need to take about a year to learn the language and you should apply well in advance, so be sure to start planning as soon as possible! A global planning for exchange in 2018-2019 can be found in the scheme above. Please note that you are responsible for the planning and process! Keep an eye on the deadlines of our faculty and the host. The scheme is a guide, not a rule!

might have several new questions. If you are interested in participation in this session, you can email us, so we can invite you for the session.

Study Abroad Week The Study Abroad Week will take place from Monday 13th to Monday 20th of November. The International Office of the Faculty will give several presentations about why you should go abroad, practical issues, scholarships, the application process, etc. We advise you to attend at least one of these presentations

You can find additional information and the program

Questions? The International Office of the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment (BG.Oost.240) works with open office hours; every working day from 12:30–13:30 you are welcome to drop by and ask your questions! Of course you can also email your questions to!

of the Study Abroad Week online:


Ik zag die blik in haar ogen en ik was verloren Ik riep haar naam en ze keek wat verlegen naar mij Zie hoe ze lachte Zij sprak mij taal niet, maar wist precies wat ik zei My my my Delilah Why why why Delilah


KORT VERHAAL Tekst Eddy Brunelli

... Wel, wel, wel, we hebben het geweten... blikken genoeg! We hebben wellicht bepaalde blikken niet kunnen ontdekken tussen de menigte. Wees er maar niet teleurgesteld over... Wat wil je? Een half miljoen bezoekers, dan kan je wel eens een blik over het hoofd zien! Lachen was géén probleem want menigeen werd van af de boot getrakteerd op een gulle glimlach en de nodige flirt momenten. Van wie die waren, laten we in het ongewisse. En de bezoekers flirtten er lustig op los zodat we allemaal hebben genoten. De eerste twee dagen hebben Dicky en ik acte de présence gegeven. Op Facebook werden we belaagd waarom we de theatergroep niet hadden benaderd om de plaats van Joyce op te vullen. Het is niet aan ons - de organisatie heeft het laatste woord. Daar komt nog bij dat onze kasten niet uitpuilen met Delftsblauwe kleding om iedereen in te mogen hijsen. Om problemen te voorkomen, ‘Ohhhh dat doe ik niet!’, ‘Dat trek ik niet aan!’, ‘Daar doe ik niet aan mee!’ en ‘Dat wil ik niet!’, hebben we het zo gelaten. Uiteindelijk kun je niet overal bij zijn. Ik had zelfs een uitnodiging bij Talpa afgeslagen voor een nieuw programma - zo’n reisje langs de Rijn laat ik niet aan me neus voorbij gaan! En dan de bende in de steek te laten? Ben der gek! De saamhorigheid was meer dan gewéldig op de boot. Één voor allen en allen voor één. Dicky was op een zeker moment in de ban van een bepaalde gebeurtenis en wilde dat tegen mij vertellen. Plotseling dook er een brug op en sloeg tegen mijn achterhoofd. Ik klapte voorover in een gigantisch bloemstuk en bleef als verdoofd liggen. Hoe wil je het hebben? Op de boot in je kostuum tussen de bloemen naar het einde!? In het hiernamaals was ik verre van welkom, ik was er nog niet klaar voor. Wel klaar ermee. Een half uur bleef de gong doorslaan terwijl er iedere keer koekoek, koekoek, koekoek geroepen werd. Je bent artiest of niet. Je gaat door tot het gaatje: ‘The show must go on!’ De schipper had een verhaal waar we kippenvel en de beverik van hebben gekregen. Zo óók de tweede schipper. Joyce had een verhaal waar de honden géén brood van lusten, terwijl ze zelf een border collie heeft die best wel brood lust. Dicky schampte haar been aan een plank. Gedver de gedver! Het moet niet gekker worden! Op de Corsoboot hadden we allemaal oog en oor voor elkaar, alsof we al jaren contact hebben. Dicky, Joyce en ik natúúrlijk wél. We hadden het niet beter kunnen treffen! Zelfs het weer liet zich van een zonnige kant zien. Bij de eind stop heerlijk met elkaar gegeten, wat gedronken en geklonken. Op de valreep op de foto met Danny Christian, zodat we moe maar voldaan ons naar huis konden begeven. In het volgende nummer vervolgen wij de Artifact. Eddy nomineert Mark Brand hiervoor.




This article is a follow up to the article published on BNieuws 09, 2017, titled ‘We have a New Urban Agenda: What Now?’. In that first article, I explained what the New Urban Agenda is and why it is important to discuss it, as well as why we organised a UN-Habitat-sponsored Urban Thinkers Campus at TU Delft. In the present article, I move forward to the preliminary conclusions of the UTC. A modified version of the present text was published at the New Urban Campaign Newsletter ‘On the move’.


Maybe one of the main conclusions derived from the Urban Thinkers Campus organised at BK is that Spatial Planning and Design education around the world needs to undergo a revolution if we wish to prepare critical minds and skilled professionals who will be able to steer the implementation of the New Urban Agenda in the next 20 years. The way in which planning and design are generally taught does not cater for the need to create sustainable, fair and inclusive cities. Many planning and design schools follow an old paradigm of architectural education that privileges individual genius and design creativity and do not prepare students to understand the implications of social, economic and environmental sustainability, spatial justice and the right to the city. Most importantly, the relationship between those concepts and the built environment is not well understood. This poses the question: what can spatial planning and design schools actually DO in order to help deliver the city we need?

One of the main challenges for planning and design schools is to offer education that is transdisciplinary. This is because cities are complex systems that must be understood from a multitude of complementary angles. The lack of transdisciplinarity in urban planning and design education is both a reflection of and results in sectoral urban challenges being fenced off in departments and administrations who barely communicate with each other. Isolated sectoral approaches fail to contemplate both the unintended consequences and the full strategic value of actions taken. The reality of urban management in most places is fragmented, unimaginative and excessively technocratic, if not squarely inefficient and plagued by corruption. Well, we need to change that, and the best way to do it is through education and capacity building. This is why we decided to organize an UTC focused on education for the New Urban Agenda at TU Delft. How do we teach the New Urban Agenda? And what do we need to teach/learn in order to

Old centre of Mumbai, India (2013).

implement its core ideas? During 3 days in June, academics, members of the public sector, private sector and civic society, as well as students and members of the public got together at TU Delft in The Netherlands to debate precisely those questions. Many people at TU Delft are convinced that universities have a very important role to play in supporting sustainable urban development around the world, and we have been reforming our education in order to respond to the challenges of urbanization today. Habitat III in Quito and its outcome document, the New Urban Agenda, reinforce the idea that sustainable urbanisation is an engine for development. But urban sustainability here is holistic, embracing its three constituent elements: the environment, economy and society. The NUA seeks to create a mutually reinforcing relationship between sustainable urbanization and development, but it pays much more attention to the social and political aspects that underscore sustainability. The idea is that by addressing Sustainable Development Goal 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities: Make cities and human settlements

inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable), we can address most of the other SDGs agreed by the United Nations in 2015. If we wish to ensure “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”, as the Brundtland Report of 1987 put it, then we must be able to build socially sustainable, healthy, fair and inclusive cities. And in order to do that, we must find the political, economic and technological tools that will support sustainable urban development. The NUA introduces three ‘enablers’ for sustainable cities: local fiscal systems, urban planning, and basic services and infrastructure. In doing so, the NUA explicitly recognizes the role of spatial planning and urban design as crucial tools that can steer and coordinate the efforts of a large number of stakeholders with diverging interests towards agreed goals. In this context, it is easy to see that most curriculums in universities around the world must adjust to the evolution seen in the NUA, that is, that we must pay more attention to the social, economic and political aspects that underpin sustainability and resilience.


It is crucial that planning and design schools go beyond their typical excessive faith in technocratic solutions and grandiloquent design in order to understand social sustainability as a central issue in sustainable urban development. Understanding governance, urban management and stakeholder involvement are essential issues for any plan or project to succeed. But what is social sustainability in urban development? Here, social sustainability concerns societal and political feasibility, legitimacy and accountability in urbanisation processes. For example, it includes aspects of governance in strategic projects, where we must understand and steer the interactions between a myriad of stakeholders from the public, private and civic


democracy building, as much as economic progress. How to prepare students to face not only the technical challenges of today’s cities, but to understand urban planning and design as vehicles for the articulation of different groups with conflicting interests? How to prepare urban planning and design students to be the articulators, synthesizers, and conjoiners of different kinds of knowledge necessary to steer sound urban development? How to explain to students their role in creating public goods for all? At TU Delft, we apply the following model to Urbanism education. In the Dutch tradition, Urbanism combines the physical sciences (notably engineering, environmental technology and information technology), the social sciences (notably sociology, political sciences, urban geography,

“IT INCLUDES ASPECTS OF GOVERNANCE IN STRATEGIC PROJECTS, WHERE WE MUST UNDERSTAND AND STEER THE INTERACTIONS BETWEEN A MYRIAD OF STAKEHOLDERS FROM THE PUBLIC, PRIVATE AND CIVIC SECTORS.” sectors. In this sense, social sustainability is a “reality check” for plans and projects. Are these plans and projects supported by the right stakeholders? Do they take into account the real economic and technological capacity of implementation existing in a given society? Who wins and, most importantly, who loses? Do they promote spatial justice and the creation of public goods? Are the formal institutions of that particular society prepared to enforce the rule of law that will guarantee projects and strategies will be carried out effectively? What about informal institutions (to use a concept outlined by the ever so great Elinor Ostrom)? While things like corruption, nepotism and clientelism are unacceptable, we can’t bury our heads in the sand and pretend they don’t exist. Instead, we must find ways to strategically deal with them in order to uproot them. Social sustainability is a matter of

management and aspects of psychology) and last but certainly not least, DESIGN. Design is the great tool that allows us (planners, designers, stakeholders, citizens) to visualize and project desirable futures. But we take a broad view on design: we design processes, where projects (buildings and infrastructures) play of course a central role. Each of those disciplines has its own worldview and asks different questions. To answer those different questions, different methodologies are needed. So, in a transdisciplinary environment, we must find ways to articulate different kinds of knowledge that will allow us to tackle urban complexity effectively. To those disciplines, we have added one crucial dimension that helps us decide on our way forward: ETHICS. Bouwkunde is entirely committed to including the ethical dimension in our education,

with workshops and discussions with specialists and committed professionals. The UTC we organized gave us the opportunity to expand the discussion and include a wide range of committed professionals and other stakeholders who can help us in the challenges ahead. Interdisciplinary studies and stakeholder involvement sound like great ideas, but they are difficult to achieve. In light of the discussion with new and old partners, the results of this UTC are a set of recommendations about education for the city we need and concern higher education institutions, rather than governments: • Universities and other higher education institutions must actively seek to improve the relationship between local governments, research and education. Local governments know what are the pressing questions being asked. Universities are equipped to enlighten local governments towards new questions and new solutions. • The engagement of higher education institutions in real urban management challenges must be constant and embedded in local governance. • Universities and other higher education institutions must actively seek transdisciplinarity and ways to join up different actions, projects and stakeholders into coherent strategies for urban development, enabling students, teachers and decision-makers to deal with complex fields of knowledge. • Universities must work on trans-sectional education that contemplates urban development from alternative perspectives, such as gender equality, minority rights, participation and democracy building, citizenship formation and the right to the city (including the right to public goods and the rights to individual goods that allow for the creation of socially stable and sustainable cities, such as shelter, education and health). • Universities must work on and enable

students to understand how urban systems are embedded in natural systems and how cities can incorporate, rather than fight those natural systems (e.g. actions that harmonize urban development, water management and energy efficiency) • Universities must actively seek to “decolonize” urban studies and urban development, pursuing knowledge building and methodologies that stem from or incorporate local knowledge vigorously. Universities must seek to create alternative forms of dialogue between North and South, as well invigorate South-South knowledge transfer. At the very least, universities must actively work to prepare students to work in unfamiliar contexts, where they need to converse with local knowledge and work towards in depth understanding of local contexts. • While local knowledge must be a priority, universities should not overlook the importance of knowledge transfer. Here, comparative studies are important to check fitness of transferability, reveal the differences in formal (governance) and informal institutions that might impact outcomes of projects and policies in different contexts. While some of these items are difficult to implement, I must say many of these things are already taking place in our education, as witnessed by the 3 As initiative, which speak directly to some of those concerns. Platforms like the Delft Global Initiative and Veldacademie, studios like Global Housing (architecture) and Complex Cities and Delta Interventions (Urbanism), among many other initiatives, help us direct our efforts. But of course, much still needs to be done for us to be able to implement the new Urban Agenda and achieve the city we need. Roberto Rocco is a senior assistant professor of Spatial Planning and Strategy at the department of Urbanism. You can contact him via


Rogier & Tiemen



Kees Kaan (1961) is head of Complex Projects since 2006 and foundingpartner of Kaan Architecten in Rotterdam.

views of the Rotterdam skyline. The house, located on the former port quays of Rotterdam, gives him the anonymity of a modern metropole.

Superpose Kees vertically interlocked two superposed terrace-apartments creating a maisonette with panoramic

Ever dreamt of moving? “Actually, at this moment, we are planning an outhouse in the Dutch delta.”

The Rules

PETER RUSSELL’S 10 RULES FOR LIFE Words & Image Peter Russell

As a dean, I have had the privilege to give speeches to freshly graduated students, in Delft and elsewhere. Young people who are about to start their careers. In the end, these talks come down to a few nuggets of information. I have pared these down to ten rules and will share them with you in Bnieuws over the coming months.

Rule #5: Go far, far away. You will always be able to find your way back–The worst thing that can happen is that you might not return not for a while at least. The world is huge and by studying this discipline, you have skills that are required almost everywhere. This doesn’t mean you have to move to Ouagadougou or Halifax or Amsterdam just to prove a point. Nonetheless, the possibilities are there; the chance to widen horizons and grasp opportunities; the chance to go somewhere or do something you never considered before should at least get a fair shake. Home has a different meaning for every individual–some of us say it’s where my hat is, some of us have a clear sense of ‘Heimat”. We all though, can learn from other places–whether it is planning concepts, architectural styles, cultural dialogues or even graphic language of local advertisements–going abroad can only enrich our ability to understand and to eventually create better places. The experiences we gain abroad will inform decisions about our old or newly chosen homes. The dialogue that takes place with the highly international student populace of the TU Delft is but one example of the rich culture this fosters. Just as we welcome or international students here in Delft, so too are TU Delft students welcome at our partners around the world. So, please, take the chance and go out there. And yes, go far far away. You will always know the way back.



SOURCES (Un)Built Scenarios pages 10-13 van der Berg, D.J., Smit, M. and MacMullin, D., Building for bouwkunde : open to ideas : open international ideas competition and think tank. 2009: Faculty of Architecture, TU Delft. 2 BK City Stay (n.d.). Retrieved October 7, 2017 https:// 3 Faculteit Bouwkunde TU Delft (n.d.) Retrieved October 3, 2017 from faculteit-bouwkunde-tu-delft/ 4 Symposium “The Faculty of the Future. (n.d.). Retrieved October 5, 2017 from Mediasite/Play/4adebc9d96b84d7eb52a63a4330df96b1d ?catalog=312b7bc9-5d1d-4fcb-aafa-c781453a7fa8 5 Welcome & The Making of the BK City. (n.d.). Retrieved October 6, 2017 from Mediasite/Play/244e579e5522476188f9372a42a8c3021d ?catalog=312b7bc9-5d1d-4fcb-aafa-c781453a7fa8&playFr om=0&autoStart=true 1


Bnieuws VOLUME 51 EDITION 02