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Hybrid Infrastructures

This research project commenced with the hypotheses that high density and functional mixing will cause cities to be more efficient, exciting and sustainable. The research paid particular attention to the role of infrastructure in the city. Where the contemporary western city deploys infrastructure as monofunctional and facilitating, ‘Hybrid Infrastructures’ researched infrastructure’s ability to absorb different functions and to interweave these with city life. The project consists of three phases. In the first phase, different examples of the integration of infrastructure and urbanity throughout the world were researched, resulting in a catalogue of possibilities. This was used for an experimental urban plan... Read More

This research project commenced with the hypotheses that high density and functional mixing will cause cities to be more efficient, exciting and sustainable. The research paid particular attention to the role of infrastructure in the city. Where the contemporary western city deploys infrastructure as monofunctional and facilitating, ‘Hybrid Infrastructures’ researched infrastructure’s ability to absorb different functions and to interweave these with city life.

The project consists of three phases. In the first phase, different examples of the integration of infrastructure and urbanity throughout the world were researched, resulting in a catalogue of possibilities. This was used for an experimental urban plan for the Rijn boulevard in Arnhem in the second phase. This area in the centre of Arnhem has been dominated by an infrastructural junction since the sixties. The plan densified and hybridised the infrastructural space creating a new dynamic neighbourhood. Using design principles discerned from 16th and 17th century mannerism, the plan was a cooperative experiment: Like cities are the result of a complex interplay of parties and forces, this plan evolved from the force field of ten individual design initiatives.

In the last phase, each individual architect further elaborated a different area within the urban plan, situated along a central pedestrian route. This resulted in five interwoven micro-urban biotopes: an inner-city furniture mall, a commercial and biological metabolical system, a de-centrally organized urban hotel and a sacral city oasis, traversed by different dwelling domains.

 

FACTS
Location: Arnhem (NL)
Program: Research, encyclopedia international examples, urban plan,
4 multifunctional complexes (50.000m2 on average)
Client: Professor Architectural history & Theory, Ton Venhoeven
Year: 2009
Collaborators: Pieter de Ruijter, Niels Ponjee

 


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