The Netherlands is at the beginning of a transition towards a circular economy. This transition demands fundamental changes that will influence municipalities, housing associations and private companies. On the 7th of February, Platform 31 and the Government Architect’s agency organized a conference to share and discuss the progress about circular urban development and its application at the neighbourhood scale. We presented our research by design about the possibilities for the circular economy in the postwar neighbourhood of Wielwijk in Dordrecht. The results of the research by design were earlier presented to the municipaity of Dordrecht on the 24th of February. A short summary of the presentation can be found in the site of the Government Architect’s agency (in Dutch) as well as the link to the rapport of the project. The conference tackled the following aspects of circular economy:
The circular economy offers opportunities to think in an innovative way about urban development, restructuring existing neighbourhoods and how to strengthen the quality of public space. On February 7, leading speakers from different perspectives gave their vision on this theme. Chairman Ruben Maes lead the conversation between the different experts.
Research by design
The Board of Government Advisors commissioned a research by design about the spatial impact and possible opportunities for circular thinking in the transformation of two post-war residential neighborhoods: Wielwijk in Dordrecht and De Maten in Apeldoorn. Can circular thinking, in addition to closing raw materials flows, also have positive effects for the neighbourhood in other areas (socio-economic, health, liveability)? how to get residents more committed and involved in the transition to a sustainable society? and what do the principles of a circular economy mean for the design, management and maintenance of the public space?
The Government Architect’s agency, Urbanos and Must shared the results of this research together with the consultancy firm Over Morgen. The Chief Government Architect Floris Alkemade and Government Advisor for the Physical Living Environment Daan Zandbelt reflected on the results.
In the ‘Circular tendering for area development’ project, Platform31, in collaboration with Metabolic, SGS Search and AT Lawyers, investigated the demand side of the circular economy. How can the principles of circular economy provide the client with strategy and approach to achieve his goals in a sustainable way? An approach from the area level makes it possible to find a balance in circular solutions for buildings and areas. During a series of five masterclasses, the participants experimented with drawing up a circular request based on the Lincolnpak case in Haarlemmermeer. The results of this project were presented by Platform 31 in the conference.