A new creative district …. where not only existing local businesses and a community of creative professionals, but also a mix in new neighborhood residents can fl ourish;The winning project of the ZoHo tender in Rotterdam’s creative district is bound to set new standards for urban livingand working. It is designed to be a strong socially inclusive neighborhood.The design team – ECHO urban design, Orange Architects, More Architecture, Studio Nauta and MoederscheimMoonen Architects – has adopted an integral approach which led to this winning concept with a strong focus on social inclusivity, as well as climate adaptation.ZoHo is an area adjacent to Rotterdam’s Central Business district and Agniese district.
In the past decade, creative professionals have turned a brownfi eld into a lively creative district. This low-rise business area with its own identity needs to be transformed into a mixed neighborhood to meet the city’s urgent densification challenges.Densification with identity preservation In our winning design we have identified space to accommodate multiple ambitions and withstand long-term development.
We have built upon what is already there: a strong community of creative professionals working in studios and workshops. We add new layers to keep this creative population in the area and areable to allocate residential space for a mixed population.Stacking and intertwining ambitionsWe stack three habitats: lab, land(scape) and city.
Where a mix in housing (from social to privately owned, from micro-apart ments to townhouses where studio and living space is combined) is spread across the levels. The main thought behind the plan is that we don’t just stack different layers, but intertwine layers by adding collective spaces for social cohesion.With the rooft op park as the most visible and defining feature.Social inclusion by configurationSocial inclusion and cohesion is created by a mix in typologies and social housing, work spaces, collective spaces and in the way these are configured.
We have reused existing plot sizes and all components can be (re)built separately in time. With this set-up we are able to accommodate the current (creative) entrepreneurs in affordable workspaces during and after the development of the new ZoHo.We have added a shared mobility hub on a large scale with cars, bikes and scooters.
Collective spaces that contribute to social cohesion – including the rooftop park, a ‘living room’ and a sports facility can be found within the three habitats and are accessible for all existing and new ZoHo residents, as well as the neighboring Agniese district.Mix use and high diversityWe are building on ZOHO’s current identity.
Creativity and innovation are prominent in this. When curating the interpretation of the various functions, we therefore explicitly look at how parties underline, propagate or reinforce the DNA of the Zomerhofkwartier. We bring balance to the program through a complementary mix of functions. Each program has therefore distinctive character and added value for the Zomerhofkwartier.The sequence of entrances, public facilities and collective spaces forms a routing with which connections are made between the various layers in the plan.
The Lab layer connects manufacturing workshops, Mobility hub, living rooms, catering and experimental forms of co-living. The strong interaction between these functions are facilitated and connected through the collective inner world in the Lab layer..