Architecture – 17 projects selected

In the fourth Architecture round of 2021, 17 proposals have been selected. All the positively assessed applications were awarded grants. Staff member Ibrahim Alaoui Chrifi reflects on the round.

13 January 2022

general impression
Social themes are central to very many of the proposals submitted, and an increasing number of applications are exploring a broad approach to the design of our public domain. For instance, there are applications aimed at utilizing public space for play and exercise for children. There is also a focus on the needs of people with disabilities and the position of different types of migrants. It is also notable that some proposals reflect on current themes in architecture and beyond through crossovers with other disciplines. Finally, this round also pays the necessary attention to the energy transition and circularity within architecture. In this context, the development and application of bio-based building materials is well represented. In the last few rounds, we have seen more frequently projects that focus on this topic, and new methods or applications are being sought in a variety of ways.

The following projects give a good idea of the breadth of projects being supported:

De antichambre. Seksuele tussenruimte in de inclusieve stad – Tom Loois

Curator and concept developer Tom Loois and architect and urban designer Paul van den Bergh are conducting research into new inner-city sex spaces in the project De antichambre. Seksuele tussenruimte in de inclusieve stad (The antechamber. Sexual interspace in the inclusive city). They find that window prostitution, sex shops and swingers’ clubs are disappearing from the streets as a result of repressive municipal policies. At the same time, there is an increasing focus on physical and therefore also sexual well-being. In this project, typologies of sex spaces are identified in the Eindhoven region. Discussions are also held with operators and users of these spaces, and with experts in the field of sexuality and urban development. The applicants see the ‘antichambre’, a front or intermediate space that provides access to sex spaces, as a possible solution for an inclusive and pluriform sex experience in the city. Loois and Van den Bergh will bring together the results of their initial research in an online publication that will serve as a starting point for further design research.

SHELL_ter by Studio Sway

SHELL_ter – Studio Sway
Studio Sway by designer Shaakira Assat aims to explore the potential of eggshells as a building material in SHELL_ter. During the first COVID lockdown, Assat created a massive block of egg waste in her kitchen. In this initial phase, she will continue to explore the material and cultural dimensions of this material. In the process, she attempts to reproduce eggshell production in a laboratory and asks questions about what we mean by shelter, to what extent our homes can be part of the natural ecosystem and whether they should be built to stand the test of time. Assat will receive support from Bas Rodenburg, professor of animal welfare at Utrecht University, from the sustainable chicken farm Kipster and BlueCity Lab in Rotterdam.

Opening cities, Migrants in urban space. Amsterdam and Athens – Uitgeverij THOTH

Publisher THOTH will develop and produce the publication Opening cities, Migrants in urban space. Amsterdam and Athens by urban designer and researcher Lena Knappers. Knappers argues that cities view migrant housing too much as a temporary problem, excluding newcomers from participating in society as a result. The publication will focus on the absorptive capacity of European cities to accommodate newcomers: how can the city prepare for demographic fluctuations and remain accessible to different groups of people? Knappers conducted her research in Amsterdam and Athens. In the publication, she will present guiding principles for an alternative approach to migration based on these studies, to inspire urban planners and policymakers. Collaborators for the creation of this publication include Eva Papatzani (National Technical University of Athens), non-profit organizations KHORA and the Sunday School for Migrants and architectural historian Annuska Pronkhorst. Former government architect Floris Alkemade is writing the foreword.

Heilige Huisjes. Onorthodoxe oplossingen voor de wooncrisis – Stichting CASA

CASA in Arnhem wants to develop a public programme with 10 meet-ups under the title Heilige Huisjes. Onorthodoxe oplossingen voor de wooncrisis (Sacred Cows. Unorthodox solutions to the housing crisis). The central question is: how can we shape the current housing challenge? On the one hand, according to the applicant, the current housing shortage will create a greater divide in society, a problem that is already current in Arnhem and will become more urgent. However, as a result of climate change, she expects a growing population in the eastern part of the Netherlands. Related to the series of physical meetings, CASA is organizing a radio programme for a wide audience and providing interim reporting through online articles. At the conclusion of each meeting, a writer, poet or performer will recite a column. In each edition, a sacred cow will be the topic of discussion, such as building in green locations and high-rise buildings in the city. The speakers involved include government architect Francesco Veenstra and architect Nathalie de Vries from MVRDV. In the final meeting of the series, CASA will hand over its Ten Commandments for the housing crisis to Mayor Ahmed Marcouch.

Click here for all the projects selected in Architecture in 2022.

Of the 27 subsidy applications taken into consideration, 17 are receiving grants. This brings the percentage of applications receiving grants to 63%. The closing date for the first round of 2022 is 26 January.