Rotterdam considers piloting environmentally-friendly roads made from recycled plastic bottles

(Courtesy VolkerWessels)

(Courtesy VolkerWessels)

Always an early adopter of innovative sustainability methods, the city of Rotterdam is considering piloting roads fabricated from recycled plastic. The creators of PlasticRoad wooed the city council with their proposal of an all-plastic road that is quicker to lay and requires less maintenance than asphalt.

Continue reading after the jump.

Crowdsourced Infrastructure: Dutch Architects ZUS Complete A Self-Initiated Footbridge

Architecture, International, Urbanism
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
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Luchtsingel by Zones Urbaines Sensibles (ZUS), the world's first mostly crowd-funded infrastruture.

Luchtsingel by Zones Urbaines Sensibles (ZUS), the world’s first mostly crowd-funded infrastructure.

Have you ever wanted to go to the park but had a highway or rail yard in your way? Ever feel like the best parts of your city are disconnected? Do what Rotterdam– and New York–based designers Zones Urbaines Sensibles (ZUS) did. They wanted to connect parts of Rotterdam, so they took matters into their own hands and put together a crowdfunding initiative to connect a series of three districts through public infrastructure. Luchtsingel, a 1300-foot-long bridge received support from some 5,000 people and finally opened last week.

More after the jump.

Bike path in pieces: Skeptics dismiss Dutch solar bike path SolaRoad as inefficient “cash grab”

(Courtesy SolaRoad)

(Courtesy SolaRoad)

Naysayers have rained criticism on Dutch Solaroad solar bike path system. In the first six months of operation, it reportedly overshot energy production expectations to the collective glee of engineers. However, self-described “scientists” are taking it down with numerical rhetoric, namely the cost and inferior production capacity relative to rooftop solar panels. Last year’s pilot test ate up $3.2 million in investor funding for a 230-foot stretch of concrete, and SolaRoad remains tightlipped on the cost per square foot.

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New robot technology by Dutch designer can 3D-print a steel bridge in mid-air over a canal

(Courtesy MX3D)

(Courtesy MX3D)

New to the list of job functions up for replacement by technology: bridge construction. Dutch designer Joris Laarman has founded MX3D, a research and development company currently tinkering with a never-before-seen 3D printer that can weld steel objects in mid-air.

Continue reading after the jump.

Flood prevention scheme in the Netherlands creates unique byproduct: an urban river park island

(Courtesy Room for the River Waal)

(Courtesy Room for the River Waal)

After a close shave with nature 20 years ago, the Netherlands has sought to reinvent defensive flood prevention. “Room for the Waal” is an anti-flood program in Nijmegen, a city which spans the River Waal, Europe’s busiest waterway, where a sharp turn forms a bottleneck as it nears the city.

Continue reading after the jump.

This solar-power generating bike lane in the Netherlands wows engineers by producing more juice than expected

(Courtesy SolaRoad)

(Courtesy SolaRoad)

Performance-wise, the Dutch power-generating bike path, SolaRoad, has overshot expectations, generating upwards of 3,000 kilowatts of power in the six months since its launch. The 230-foot concrete strip is located in Krommenie, a village northwest of Amsterdam, and is undergoing a three-year pilot test for material feasibility.

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Could New York learn from these temporary affordable prefab homes in the Netherlands?

Courtesy Heijmans ONE

(Courtesy Heijmans ONE)

Affordable housing has been a critical part of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s agenda since taking office, promising to create or preserve 200,000 affordable units over the next decade. At a press conference last week, the mayor announced that his administration has made headway toward achieving this ambitious goal, financing over 17,300 affordable homes in the last year (whether his predecessor, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, should have received some credit for this accomplishment has spurred debate).

Continue reading after the jump.

An Impossible Stair by NEXT Architects

Brought to you with support from:
Fabrikator
Sander Meisner_03

The steel staircase is based on a Möbius strip. (Sander Meisner)

A folly in a Rotterdam suburb draws on residents’ complex relationship with the city.

The residents of Carnisselande, a garden suburb in Barendrecht, the Netherlands, have a curious relationship with Rotterdam. Many of them work in the city, or are otherwise mentally and emotionally connected to it, yet they go home at night to a place that is physically and visually separate. When NEXT architects was tapped to build a folly on a hill in the new town, they seized on this apparent contradiction. “This suburb is completely hidden behind sound barriers, highways, totally disconnected from Rotterdam,” said NEXT director Marijn Schenk. “We discovered when you’re on top of the hill and jump, you can see Rotterdam. We said, ‘Can we make the jump into an art piece?’” Read More

Impressive Shortlist for New Dutch Cultural Center Revealed

International, Newsletter
Monday, March 3, 2014
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Arnhem, Netherlands is in the midst of commissioning designs for ArtA, a new cultural center planned for the city. Proposals from an impressive list of four international firms are being considered for the space, which is to house the Museum Arnhem and the Focus Film Theater. Beyond accommodating both exhibition and theater programming, the structure is also meant to act as a link between the city and the waterfront of the adjacent Rhine River.

All the proposals after the jump.

Unveiled> MVRDV Designs Shiny New Storage Facility for Rotterdam Museum

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MVRDV’s winning proposal. (Courtesy MVRDV)

Dutch firm MVRDV has won a competition to design a new public/private art depot for the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen in Rotterdam. While the design has been selected, the fate of the project remains in the balance. City council officials have until the end of the year to decide whether or not to go ahead with construction.

Learn more after the jump.

OMA’s Massive De Rotterdam Towers Completed

International
Monday, December 2, 2013
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(Courtesy OMA)

(Courtesy OMA)

After less than four years under construction, the massive De Rotterdam towers, OMA’s grand experiment in urban density and scale, were completed a few weeks ago. With over 1,700,000 square feet of floor space, Rem Koolhaas’ glass-clad “vertical city” is the largest multifunctional building in the Netherlands.

Continue reading after the jump.

Dutch Architects Join Race For World’s First 3D-Printed House

International
Thursday, March 14, 2013
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Rendering of DUS' proposed 3D printed house in Amsterdam. (Courtesy DUS)

Rendering of DUS’ proposed 3D printed house in Amsterdam. (Courtesy DUS)

Dutch firm DUS Public Architecture has switched gears from soap and water to polypropylene as they join the race (alongside British collective SoftKill Design and fellow Dutchman Janjaap Ruijssenaars) to complete the first 3D printed house. Their sights are set on a full-sized four-story canal house in Amsterdam, entirely printed and built on site by the KamerMaker, their own purpose-built 3D printer housed inside a verticle shipping container. Starting work in the next six months, DUS plan to have the entire facade and first room of the house printed and erected. With the “welcoming room” established, the architects hope to complete the rest of the house in the following three years.

Videos of the giant KamerMaker 3D printer after the jump.

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