Antwerp, Belgium

Adding green to bring coherence to a fragmented urban fringe zone

Just east of Antwerp lie the areas of Ruggeveld and Botelaar-Silsburg, where Karres en Brands has made a landscape concept in cooperation with Maxwan and 1010. The area is next to the Rivierenhof—a former estate, now used as a recreational park and one of the most important green areas of Antwerp. However, Ruggeveld and Botelaar-Silsburg form a fragmented whole that includes allotments, a ski slope, an ecologically valuable stream, a cemetery, and several commercial functions. The main goal of the plan was to re-establish spatial coherence in the area, and to allow optimal interweaving of landscape, sports park, activity, and ecology.

The starting point for the spatial coherence is to create a network of ‘green joints’, by which the park gains structure and accessibility: add the green sprouting from the valley, enclose the spaces with recreational programmes, and branch into the surrounding streets. The spatial intention is to allow the creation of a subtle, park-like monumentality.

The park, which has a significance beyond the local, is situated around the sports complex that, with its indoor ski slope, is an important landmark for Ruggeveld Park. The east side of Ruggeveld Park is an offshoot of the valley in the direction of the city’s Ertbrugge forest. From a spatial perspective, this area is a more densely grown part of the park, within which the various sports clubs can be placed. In Silsburg, the changes will be driven by the building of allotments and a project to naturally roughen the valley, whereby the area is made ecologically interesting and educational, as well as a valuable natural experience. Some parts will become a recreational forest, while other zones are organised as protected areas.

Project data
Location Antwerp, Belgium
Assignment ​Design multifunctional green zone master plan and elaboration of subareas
Size ​82 hectare
Design ​2009 – 2010
Construction ​2012 – 2017
Status ​Master plan approved; vegetable gardens realised
Client ​AG Stadsplanning Antwerp
In collaboration with ​Maxwan, 1010, Goudappel Coffeng

Ruimtelijke Planningsprijs 2010

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