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Leeuwendalersweg and Leeuw van Vlaanderenstraat

Masterplan Kolenkitbuurt public space plan

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Kolenkitbuurt Amsterdam/ The sidewalk / Amsterdam/ NL/ Mar 2019

 

This neighbourhood came in the news in February 2009 as the most problematic district of the Netherlands, with problems such as poverty, unemployment (11.5%), problematic youth and crime. Eighty per cent of the inhabitants here are immigrants, the majority of whom are of Moroccan origin. Most residents are first and second generation migrants. Nevertheless, they have been working on urban renewal for over a decade and a half. The transformation starts with ups and downs. After initial optimism, substantial stagnation has been caused by the credit crisis. Only stacking stones is not the solution, a large part of the problem also has an economic and social component. In any case, tackling the spatial component contributes significantly to everyone’s well being. The Kolenkitbuurt will be more nice, more sustainable, mixed and a beautiful, diverse Amsterdam neighbourhood for the future.

The Kolenkitbuurt was realized just after the war as one of the first parts of the Algemeen Uitbreidingsplan Amsterdam to solve the shortage of good housing. The plan was designed earlier in the 1930s. At the beginning of this century, the quality of the houses is poor, too small, no longer liveable and poorly insulated. The public space had deteriorated and there was a lot of waste on the streets. There was little room to play for the many children. The turned to stone monotonous dark streets were crowded with parked cars. By simply creating space, many opportunities arose within the existing pattern. More space was not available, buildings had to be replaced block by block. You create greater financial margin by adding more houses and thus incidentally a tower. You can make more space on the street by realizing parking garages beneath the blocks. Far fewer cars in public space offer opportunities for a green street and broad sidewalks to play on. In the area between the building and the pavement, there is room for a ‘encroachement zone’. This is an intermediate zone with space for a terrace, entrances, meeting and small gardens. The street therefore loses its monotonous character and becomes much more lively. The building blocks are lighter in colours and get large balconies without satellite dishes. The dishes are replaced with a central antenna. The street becomes much more urban and therefore more alive.

For more information about the project look at the page projects/ portfolio.

 

Green inner courtyards/ edges of the urban scheme/ playground

Algemeen Uitbreidingsplan Amsterdam the fifties

 

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