As part of the Venice Biennale of Architecture 2012, MVRDV contributed a video installation showing the urban planning concept ‘Freeland’ a revolutionary model in urban planning that steps away from governmental dictate and invites organic urban growth, stimulating initiatives through inhabitants can create their own neighbourhoods including public space and infrastructure. Successes, failures and surprises play out in a series of intriguing narratives that explore a new, radically liberated urbanism.
Freeland, MVRDV’s urban planning concept for Almere Oosterwold, revolutionizes the way that land is developed in the Netherlands. It proposes remapping the regulation of buildings and development towards community initiative, while reinventing the relationship between governments, people, and their urban fabric through the power of the collective via the internet. It is a radically liberated place where architectural freedom extends to the urban environment as a whole, challenging and empowering citizens to become active participants in the land development process.
In 2008, MVRDV was commissioned to create an overall development strategy for the city of Almere for the next 20-40 years. Almere is a New Town developed on reclaimed land since the 1970s, and it has grown – not coincidentally – into a prime example of the low-density, low-diversity suburban condition.
Almere plans to add 60,000 homes and 100,000 jobs by 2030, partly to siphon development from nearby Amsterdam. MVRDV convinced the municipality of Almere to ‘repair’ the mono-functional character of its existing housing stock by adding neighborhoods with more urban qualities in the west, and neighborhoods with more rural qualities in the east (Freeland), integrating job creation into developments and turning Almere into a diverse and balanced city.
More Information : Almere Oosterwold