Ijburg: City of islands
The development of Ijburg by Amsterdam, Holland, is based on the struggle to provide new urban development amidst a swathe of conflicting conditions; the demand for new housing close to Amsterdam city centre, the lack of available land to build on, and the necessity to retain water surface area and flood water volume in Lake Ijssel.
Mangfoldige huse i Ijburg. Venligst udlånt af www.hamperium.com © 2008.
There is a long tradition in Amsterdam and throughout the Netherlands for building and living on water. For centuries large parts of Lake Ijssel to the east of Amsterdam have been filled with sand to prepare for new urban development. In 1965 Van den Broek and Bakema proposed the Pampus plan; an urban extension for Amsterdam stretching along its eastern harbour in the form of a linear city. The plan appeared as an alternative to the traditional separation of city and landscape and instead attempted to integrate the two.
It wasn't until forty years later that the vision of Pampus was
revived. This time, the form of the plan was less based on lines of
new infrastructure and more on the existing context of nature and
water. In response to opposition to built development and concerns
for the resultant loss in valuable ecology, the masterplan launched
in 1996 and drawn up by Palmbout Urban Landscapes, does not dyke in
and reclaim the Ijmeer but instead proposes a city model built on a
loose arrangement of archipelagoes. The results is a diverse set of
water edge conditions; some are beaches and shorelines which
function like those of a natural lake, whilst others take on the
character of a hard-surfaced urban harbour.
Ijburg is made up of eight islands, each with its own character. Forming part of phase 1, Haveneiland and Rieteiland are the most urban, with high density buildings, quayside promenades and facades dropping directly to the water's surface. In contrast, Buiteneiland and Middeneiland in Ijburg II take on a more loose-fit, organic feel, with softer waterside gardens leading to more gradual tapered coastlines.
When The Council of State rejected the zoning plan for Ijburg
II, McDonough Partners were invited to explore what and how
development could proceed without causing negative environmental
impacts to Lake Ijmeer. Their 'Sustainable Dashboard' positions the
intended objectives of Ijburg I against the outcomes of
environmental performance. This is measured according to a range of
today's sustainable standards; level 1; Code / Base case, level 2;
Eco-Efficient /Best Practice, level 3; Eco-Effective, level 4;
Cradle to Cradle. The criteria being assessed are divided into
subcategories of energy, mobility, water cycle, ecology, solid
waste and community. McDonough and Partners' have articulated a new
set of development principles to enable Ijburg II to operate as an
urban ecosystem; powered by solar energy, planned to encourage
diversity, accommodating change and eliminating waste.
"[With floating homes] you basically create undeveloped land exactly where you need to build most" Marion Sprenkeler, spokeswoman for ABC Arkenbouw, developing floating homes in IJburg, Amsterdam, and Leidsche Rijn, Utrecht.
Mixed aesthetics, mixed occupancy
The island of Steigereiland combines high density, high rise apartments, medium density four-storey townhouses, two-storey terraces and houseboats. There are also a number of self commissioned dwellings. Each urban block is held by a design framework but within this, there is a high degree of variation with regards to façade arrangement and the choice of colours and materials used.
Due to a lack of available land next to Amsterdam city and in
response to future flood risks from rising water levels, Ijburg is
becoming a fertile test-bed for floating homes. These are
constructed on concrete bases and are prefabricated which allows
for customized homes. Houseboats can change and adapt to future
conditions since they plug on to the mains supply of water, heat,
and electricity via floating jetties but can always be detached,
moved and plugged on elsewhere.
Last updated Tuesday, January 21, 2014