From garden city to park city
Amsterdam Nieuw West faces various challenges, including stalled urban renewal, limited employment opportunities (half the average of Amsterdam), poor health, loneliness, language barriers, and issues related to livability and safety. The housing stock is outdated and lacks diversity.
The area known as ‘De Punt’ is particularly problematic—a neighborhood with low stimulation and limited activities, yet plagued by significant disturbances. A social uplift is urgently needed in this community.
The municipal government of Amsterdam, in the ‘gebiedsagenda Osdorp’ (Osdorp Area Agenda), outlines problems and opportunities, leading to goals such as creating diverse living and working environments with a strong green and water structure, employment growth, learning and innovation, fostering new entrepreneurs, and strengthening connections with the city. Despite its challenges, the area has favorable aspects, including its proximity to Schiphol, the ports, the ring road, and the center of Amsterdam. Good public transportation infrastructure is already in place, and the potential for further development, especially with the future extension of the tram to Schiphol, adds to its prospects.
The focus should be on creating an environment that supports a different urban lifestyle and appeals to various demographics, aiming to raise the overall standards. The Dijkgraafplein, located in the middle of this district, can play a crucial role in this transformation.
The central location of Dijkgraafplein justifies a unique and prominent role, going beyond residential functions alone. A combination of housing and tailored amenities is needed to serve as a catalyst for the necessary neighborhood improvement. This study envisions a comprehensive program, including a health center linked to (partially indoor) sports facilities, an outdoor swimming pool, a hospitality function, and various work and retail spaces. Above these, a substantial residential program is projected, encompassing various categories, including care residences with a connection to the adjacent future care building of Cordaan. The feasibility of this package of functions is achieved through a strong intensification and stacking of all functions, with water and green spaces as key elements. The vision for Nieuw West is to transition from a Garden City to a Park City.