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votes: 1

Carpet Metropolis: Urban Development Study for the Environs of The Hague

Client: Gemeente Den Haag, Dienst Stadsontwikkeling en Grondzaken

Designers: Willem Jan Neutelings

For many people, a city is a red dot amidst a green landscape, like this city shown here on the map. But a growing number of grey areas are springing up around all these red dots. What exactly are they? Architect Willem Jan Neutelings wants to let go of that idea of the city surrounded by a residual space.

Neutelings studies the southern periphery of The Hague and tries to transform the ‘grey’ areas there into clearly defined zones. The strips along the A4 need to be transformed from a non-place into a place. He makes them into a ‘carpet’ or tapijt, a patchwork quilt in which each little area has its own specific character. Several of his proposals are free-standing ‘socio-bungalows’ with urban amenities close at hand, Plein 1999 (an open area for large-scale events under the Prins Clausplein) and Heuvelstad (‘gold coast’ villas on the rolling parkland that was once landfill around Rijswijk). The cosiness of the Dutch terraced house in the polder must make way for the vastness of the 21st century landscape, much in the style of Los Angeles.

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