ZOHO addresses metropolitan questions

The dynamic master plan for ZOHO is an affordable, sustainable and inclusive inner city transformation. Thus, the designers provide suitable solutions to the urgent urban challenges of our time. The plan will be realized from 2021 in the heart of Rotterdam.

How do you keep the manufacturing industry and creative companies in the city? How do you really involve residents in planning? How do you make an affordable inclusive part of the city? And how do you do that in a sustainable way? These are the metropolitan questions of our time, which are also addressed in Rotterdam.

The Zomerhofkwartier is sandwiched between the center and the Agniesebuurt in Rotterdam. In the past decade, creative residents and entrepreneurs have transformed this area with commercial buildings into a lively urban district. In the tender for these tasks, the municipality of Rotterdam formulated the ambition to compact the area into a mixed city neighborhood, while retaining the creative identity.

The plan builds on what is already there: a strong community of creative entrepreneurs. By basing the plan on the existing plot sizes, the various plan parts can be developed and built in phases. With this set-up, today’s creative entrepreneurs can be housed in affordable workplaces both during and after plan development.

New layers
The plan adds new layers to the existing Zomerhofkwartier to create living space for existing and new residents. In doing so, the plan creates housing for a mixed group – social, middle rent and in the private sector.

In the plan, three living environments are stacked: an elevated peat landscape is placed on the existing industrial ‘maker’s layer’, with a city layer again there. Not only does the plan stack different living worlds, but it also interweaves them through collective spaces – including a public sports hall and a living room for the neighborhood.

Climate adaptive
The raised roof park is the most visible component of this. This raised bog landscape is a unique climate adaptive concept: a “sponge” with an underground reservoir for heavy rainfall, and an irrigation system for extreme drought in the summer.

The design for ZOHO is a dynamic master plan, in which the main structures, the programmatic and volume frameworks and the image quality are recorded. And we have made system choices for climate adaptation, mobility, energy and circularity. This means that the details are still partly open. The area is filled with users, thereby creating ownership and social resilience.

Name: ZOHO
Design team: MORE Architecture, ECHO Urban Design, Studio Nauta, MoederscheimMoonen, Orange Architects,
Developer: Leyten & Stebru
Investor: Bouwinvest, Havensteder

Design: 2019 – 2021
Start Construction: 2022

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