Competition Archieven - Felixx

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de Architekten Cie. + FELIXX have won the competition for the spatial development strategy of Chelyabinsk, Russia

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An international urban design competition was held by the City Administration of Chelyabinsk, for the development strategy and masterplan of the historical center. 5 teams were invited to develop a proposal. The team of de Architekten Cie. + Felixx Landscape Architects & Planners was awarded with the 1st prize during the ceremony on 27th of January 2017. The winning plan activates the existing grid structure of the city, turning it into a mechanism for transformation.

Chelyabinsk is one of the medium sized towns in Russia, with a population ranging from 1-1,5 million inhabitants. Many of these cities have similar conditions and challenges: Remote located, heavy industrialized, and an aging population as young and higher educated generations are moving to the federal cities of Moscow and St-Petersburg.
To attract new residents, and shift towards new economies, the historical qualities of Chelyabinsk should be merged with contemporary values of urban life. But sheer developing another plan for the Chelyabinsk as a post-industrial town does not solve the problem: the industry is the reason of existence of the city. Therefore the plan shifts the focus from ‘to be removed industries’, towards ‘the city as a breeding ground for social capital’. The winning proposal invests in the upgrade of the urban environment to generate interest from new generations, attracting people and parties that support a shift towards new economies, targeting a gradual replacement of polluting industries by a variety of functions and activities.

Chelyabinsk already holds the spatial framework to organize this transformation: the grid structure of the historical center. There are plenty of examples showing the ability of the grid to be the base for a qualitative urban realm, structuring the transformation and densification of an existing city.

Chelyabinsk’s existing framework is empowered by 3 strategies:
Grid: Inclusive realm
Streets are the main public realms in the city. Apart from being spaces for car traffic, they serve as linear public spaces. The redevelopment and upgrading of streets allows for the integration of environmental infrastructure, the organization of slow traffic and public transportation.

Blocks: Mixed-use program
The existing blocks in the city leave a lot of empty space yet to be developed. The new masterplan proposes gradual transformation of the existing grid by replacing deteriorated properties and completing building blocks. Residential functions are relocated in the center of the city.

Catalyst projects
Specific projects are developed, to revitalize certain areas, add special qualities to the city,
or boost development and transformation in direct surroundings. They are strongly related to existing qualities. These projects enable the government to steer in the speed of gradual transformation and the areas where it is happening. The most important project is the redevelopment of the riverfront along the Miass river, redefining the overall identity of Chelyabinsk.

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Team Felixx-jvantspijker wins tender with free haven for Reykjavik

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The Dutch design offices Felixx and jvantspijker, together with Orri Steinarsson, have won the international urban design competition in Gufunes, Reykjavik. The task was the strategic redevelopment of a vast coastal area of approximately 140 hectares, at the edge of the city. The winning proposal is committed to transform the area, with striking industrial buildings along the coast and a vast green zone inland, into a haven for urban pioneers. The 1st prize was awarded during a ceremony on Wednesday night (December 7th) by the mayor of Reykjavik. In due course the process to elaborate and implement the project will be developed.

The winning proposal positions the area as an overflow for downtown Reykjavik. Tourism keeps growing, and the city can hardly cope with the increasing pressure on space and program in the center. Gufunes will therefore become an unpolished haven for starters, city pioneers and creative businesses that can no longer be accommodated elsewhere in the city. The vast area is being restructured into a coherent whole. The zone around the existing industrial buildings will be re-densified into a new urban center. The open green area transforms into a multifunctional recreational park for events and large-scale outdoor activities.

The spatial strategy creates the conditions for a phased transformation, able to anticipate on different development speeds. A simple grid structures the industrial area, and a network of paths and roads organize the recreational landscape. The urban and park landscape are linked, and necessary connections with the surrounding urban environment and the shoreline are established. The framework ensures the overall spatial quality and functioning of the area. It both defines the frame and generates the conditions for the re-development of existing and construction of new buildings.

A crucial element is the proposed waterbus service, making Gufunes accessible for commuters and tourists in an environmentally friendly way. The heart of the community is the revitalised pier, where the first phase program is driven by the realisation of the famous Baltasar Kormákur’s film studios in an existing warehouse. Around the pier a wide variety of functions and programs are planned: small businesses, cafes and restaurants, a hotel, residential buildings, leisure and outdoor program. Together these interventions will put Gufunes on the map as a new destination in Reykjavik.

The combination of a new pioneer area and a recreational landscape park add necessary space and non- existing conditions to the city. They enrich the urban ecology: Gufunes as the urban fertilizer for Reykjavik.

felixx-schiedam

Europan plan becomes reality: Schie Quarter Development Strategy has been approved

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The city council of Schiedam has approved the development strategy for the Schie Quarter. The vision has been made by Team Schiedam, a collaboration between the offices Basic City, Felixx and Studio Komma. In the coming years the area around the central Koemarkt square and the Schie canal  will transform into a meeting place with living, working and leisure. The strategy is an elaboration of the winning entries from the Europan 12 competition in 2013.

Schiedam has a particular urban configuration with the historical center and the port industry right next to each other. The Schie Quarter, situated at the border of both areas, will connect spatially and functionally to form a new urban entity. The objective of the development strategy is to transform  the area into a vivid district around the Schie canal; A new vital and authentic downtown entrance.

The central Koemarkt square will be simplified and connected to the water. The renewed square will become an integral link between the industrial area and the historic center. The adjacent and currently vacant VROM location offers space to a new program in the future that fits both the historic city and the industrial area.

The development strategy proposes an incremental transformation. It is a flexible strategy that steers the spatial, social and economic development potential of the project area. The entire planning area is thereby divided into a number of subprojects. This subdivision makes it possible to develop the entire planning area in several steps with their own pace and priority. This allows the project to respond to the dynamics of contemporary urban development.

To achieve a feasible plan that is being carried by multiple stakeholders, the strategy has been made within an open planning process. It has been a comprehensive cooperation between the municipality, consultants and public, which was conducted in an open dialogue. In the future this cooperation will play a continuous role with the development of the subprojects.

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Felixx MLA+ Bo'an Shenzhen

MLA+ Felixx consortium wins the Bao’an Urban Design Competition in Shenzhen China

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MLA+ in collaboration with Felixx Landscape Architects & Planners and Chinese partners China Academy of Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) and Shenzhen Municipal Design & Research Institute has won the first prize in the design competition for the regeneration of the area along the G107 highway in Bao’an district in Shenzhen. The other competing teams consisted of Nikken Sekkei, KCAP, OMA and ISA- Internationales Stadtbauatelier.

The 1-2 kilometre piece of land on both aspects of the G107 forms the 53 km2 area of the competition. The G107 highway used to be the main entrance road from Hong Kong to ‘Factory of the World’ city Shenzhen. Consequently, a fragmented industrial landscape emerged along the high way. In the past few years this landscape was further complicated by pieces of residential areas and independent developed commercial functions. Besides direct problems like regular flooding and traffic problem, the area is vulnerable in view of Shenzhen’s transition from an industry based economy to an economy based on innovation.

Therefore, the main challenge was to come up with a future-proof design that carefully integrates and addresses the complexity of the existing urban fabric.

In the design of MLA+ the highway G107 is still the driving force of the area to connect the different areas, but its function changes from an utilitarian infrastructure to a key driver for urban regeneration. Within this main structure hubs are created for different urban functions. Besides that, the public spaces are used to connect different elements of the existing city.

Markus Appenzeller – partner MLA+:
“An important element of our plan is that we try to connect the bigger regional scale with the local design scale. This ‘in-between-scale’ is in our view the most important driver for quality, but still unseen as such in China. Therefore, as European experts we can make an important contribution in this area in Chinese cities.”

Michiel Van Driessche – partner Felixx:
“This assignment is an extremely interesting cocktail, of all fundamental challenges for future-proof urbanization within an incredible divers existing urban fabric. Important environmental, social and infrastructural tasks in an almost entirely built-up area and very limited open space. With this project we aim to develop a strategic framework that revalues open space as a necessary mechanism to address these tasks, and transform the current fabric into a resilient urban environment.”

In the time to come, the consortium of MLA+ will refine the plan resulting in an implementation plan that will be implemented in the coming three years.

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Felixx Alpen

Felixx + De Zwarte Hond has won the competition for the strategic transformation of Alpen, Germany!

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Felixx + De Zwarte Hond has won the competition for the strategic transformation of Alpen. Alpen is a municipality in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. A closed international competition was organized for the redevelopment of the center. During three months, 6 shortlisted teams have been working in a participatory way. At several workshops, intermediate proposals were presented to the jury, policymakers and citizens.

Unlike many other villages, Alpen has a vibrant business community. It is very well connected to main infrastructures and situated in a beautiful rural environment. To fight the challenges of rural shrinkage, these qualities have to be sustained in order to provide qualitative living conditions, motivating young families to settle in Alpen. The proposed strategy by Felixx + De Zwarte Hond aims to preserve the current economic conditions, strengthen the social facilities and improve the ecological performance of the village. They moved the focus of the project from the center to the entire community: not one compact transformation, but a large set of acupunctural interventions and measures. Bundled into several ‘projects’, these interventions create a characteristic village road, a multigenerational facilities belt, and a new community center. The different parking lots are gradually transformed into multifunctional parking squares. The developed toolbox might be exemplary for other villages, fighting challenges of rural shrinkage.

The team of Felixx and De Zwarte Hond will develop the strategy further within a participatory process, elaborating the subprojects to be realized in different stages.

The other selected teams were Greenbox Landschaftsarchitekten, Gnüchtel Triebswetter Landschaftsarchitekten, KLA kiparlandschaftsarchitekten, wbp Landschaftsarchitekten, Karres en Brands landschapsarchitecten.

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Felixx Schiedam VROM

Exhibition on the future of Schiedam

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Tomorrow, an exhibition is organized on the Schie district in Schiedam, where we, together with Basic City A+U and Studio KOMMA, will explain our plans that we’ve been working on since our award winning entry of Europan12. The exhibition shows the development strategy for Schiedam and Schie district and gives feedback on the results of the dromenlab 2015.

When: Wednesday, May 25th, 2016 between 15:00 and 21:00
Where: the former Hotel de Kroon in Schiedam

Feel free to drop by!

 

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