Monday, 28 May 2012

Sphinxpark is open!

image: Peter Visser
Sphinxpark, a brand new temporary park in Maastricht, just around the corner of my studio, was officially opened on May 26th. I love it! Too bad it is just temporary. In collaboration with NAiM/Bureau Europa and REcentre, platform for sustainable design in the Meuse-Rhine Euregion, Marres Projects realized a temporary park in the inner city of Maastricht in 2011 and 2012.

This temporary free haven for innovation aspires to be exemplary for the manner in which the Euregion might deal with the interim in times of population decline and economic crisis. The area is part of the so-called ‘Belvédère Plan’, a master plan for the redevelopment of a large part of Maastricht. In 1999, the architect Frits Palmboom presented the plans for a new residential area on the Sphinx terrain and their realization started in 2004. However, due to the economic crisis, many urban development projects have encountered delays and postponement. The Belvédère terrain in Maastricht is also facing these problems, with the consequence that various plans are either delayed or subject to a reassessment. Amongst others, this has led to a situation in which an already serviced plot will remain undeveloped for years to come. Behind the historic walls of this former industrial area, a desolate wilderness has emerged over the past two years, creating the ideal conditions to address the question of the park of the future. Centrally situated, enclosed and featuring a rugged beauty, this walled area presents the ideal environment for a temporary park; the Sphinxpark.

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