The University of Amsterdam (UvA) and the City of Amsterdam are drafting a development plan for the University Quarter: the 'Strategic Master Plan'. The plan will serve as the foundation for various other subsequent plans, such as the design of University buildings and the public space, but will also address such themes as mobility, logistics and sustainability. Agreements between the UvA and the City on how they will be cooperating in this venture have been recorded in a contract. West 8, in its capacity as a consultant on urban design & landscape architecture, is supporting the parties in drafting the Strategic Master Plan and will be engaged as the supervisor in future.
1. Where necessary, the UvA and the City of Amsterdam want to reach agreements on the design and redesign of the public spaces in the University Quarter, as part of the development and upgrade of the University buildings. Local stakeholders with a direct interest in these matters are being involved.
2. The UvA, the City and stakeholders are all attempting to create a pleasant living and working environment, where attention is paid to pedestrian, cycle and other traffic flows, in order to accommodate the rising visitor numbers to the University Quarter and surrounding areas, involving bicycle parking facilities, sustainability, mobility and logistics.
3. The UvA and the City of Amsterdam are incorporating the above agreements in a Strategic Master Plan, which details the joint comprehensive vision regarding the University Quarter.
The Strategic Master Plan records the premises for the development and redevelopment of the University buildings and public spaces, for example in relation to:
A key focus in developing the University Quarter is the creation of a pleasant living and working environment for all users and residents. To achieve this, agreements have been laid down in a covenant on joint investments in the area. How have the various roles been allocated?
• The UvA is responsible for the design, redesign and realisation of the University buildings.
• The City of Amsterdam and the UvA will ensure the participation of local residents. Regular meetings are being organised for local stakeholders, to enable participation and to provide information (see neighbourhood news updates).
• The City of Amsterdam and the UvA are sharing responsibility for redesigning the public spaces.
The following themes are important to the UvA, the City of Amsterdam and local stakeholders:
• Collaboration: The covenant marks a new form of collaboration between the City of Amsterdam and the UvA. The Executive Board of the UvA will meet with city officials four times a year to discuss the joint agenda for the development of the University Quarter. A UvA/City of Amsterdam project group will be responsible for ensuring the area’s integrated development with the support of on-call experts from both parties.
• Logistics: The UvA will work to realise facilities that contribute to regulating traffic in the area, as well as bicycle parking and logistics flows for supplies and waste. The UvA will also examine whether facilities such as bicycle parking can be made available to neighbourhood residents.
• Sustainability: Given that the UvA and the City of Amsterdam are endeavouring to establish a sustainable University Quarter, the collaboration will also contribute to Amsterdam’s Sustainability Agenda.
Both parties have asked Adriaan Geuze, professor of Landscape Architecture and director of West 8 Urban design & landscape architecture b.v., to advise on the Master Plan that is being drawn up for the development of the University Quarter. Once the Master Plan has been adopted, Geuze will act as a supervisor, in order to ensure that the Master Plan is implemented.