Floris Grondman

Floris Grondman

Landscape Architecture

The lifeline: The Rondje Eiland (Island Circle) forms a growing structure with an inspiring symbiosis between plant, animal and human.

In this project, a new green-blue structure was designed for the city of Utrecht, where the banks of the Amsterdam-Rhine Canal and the Merwede Canal will be transformed, as a new circle around Kanaleneiland, into a growing structure. The residential building infill development planned by the city at this location close to the city centre will, due to high density, put pressure on the public space. Partly due to these developments, it is now a good moment to make a strong natural (and recreational) circle around Kanaleneiland that is of major significance to the city. This lifeline will ensure that this part of the city remains vibrant and climate adaptive with a healthy urbanisation for plant, animal and human.

The lifeline is built up of three supports: the fully regulable and adaptive water system is based on an expansion of the current drainage canal and will ensure that a robust water system is created for the entire Kanaleneiland. The gradients in the green structure create good conditions for growth of plants and shrubs, as a result of which a robust green structure arises. The hardening and a toolbox of architectural elements are not only functional, but create a wonderful interplay, in a poetic way, between the dynamic green and static grey in the environment.

The various design applications of this toolbox provide, on different scale levels, a rich ecological environment with a symbiosis between plants, animals and humans. In scale models of 1:1, this interplay between green and grey has been elaborated into beautiful elements in which the desired symbiosis is visible. By providing space and time, the lifeline is a growing green-blue structure in which development and change are essential. In this way, the urban space can be functional and inspiring at every moment in its development.

Commission members: Hanneke Kijne (mentor), Sjef Jansen, Donald Marskamp. Additional members for the examination: Mirjam Koevoet, Roel Wolters.

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