Thomas Wolfs

Thomas Wolfs

Landscape Architecture

Silence in the rush

We are living in a restless society. A society in which multiplicity and speed are dominating and valued: we work harder, longer and have more stress. There is a lot of pressure involved, which is not only a societal problem, but also a spatial problem. There is a clear trend of restlessness in society that is being amplified in the city.

This rushed way of living has negative effects on both physical and mental health and is reflected in the increasing number of people with burn-outs and people experiencing increasing amounts of stress, suffering from heart attacks and exhibiting escape behaviour, etc. These medical issues are strong indicators of a growing problem. The scream for silence is not only an individual problem, but it is a representation of a larger societal problem. This amplifies the urgency for a solution!

Therefore, this current discrepancy between the restlessness in the city and the silence outside of it needs to be resolved. Silence needs to be integrated in the city so we can bring back balance into our daily life.

With my design, I contribute to the amount of silence and peace in the city. The interventions are   made in the Amsterdam Central Station area, an area of transition. Instead of planning a public space that stimulates more action and encounters or a hectic way of living, the proposal is to create places to slow down, to take a rest or to contemplate. In this way, the space not only adds to the mental and physical health of the inhabitants of the city, but it also contributes to an overall more pleasant living environment in the city.

Graduation committee: Jana Crepon (mentor), Jens Jorritsma and Sarah van Sonsbeeck. Additional members for the exam: Joyce van den Berg and Bruno Doedens. 

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