Producing the Contemporary City

24 May - 2 September 2007
PowerNotes #07
Form and the City: The exhibition

Rotterdam - zondag 3 June 2007


On Sunday 3 June, Rotterdam's alderman for Participation and Culture, Orhan Kaya, officially opened the exhibition. The alderman said that architecture is of importance to everyone: ‘Buildings should be beautiful, but also pleasant to get along with.' In the past several decades, there has been little attention paid to Rotterdam Zuid, the south part of the city; all the attention went to Noord, its north section. Even the Kop van Zuid isn't supposed to be part of Zuid. People in this part of the city need (better) schools and facilities for senior citizens. People have to be able to feel safe, and various sections of the population have to be able to come into contact with one another. Orhan Kaya is pleased with the international attention for Zuid: ‘Most of the participants are used to a larger scale. They come from bigger cities with greater social problems. The results of the master class can be an engine for the rebirth of Zuid. Virtually every plan featured a search for new connections between physical development and social dynamics.' The alderman pledged that the Rotterdam city authorities will make a subsequent edition of the Biennale possible. ‘Rotterdam is happy with the Biennale. The International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam links this city to the world, and vice versa.'


Over the next few weeks, visitors will have an opportunity to vote on their favourite plans. This is the greatest challenge: raising the enthusiasm of local residents and challenging them to a discussion.


From 3 June to 1 July, the designs are on view on the 5th floor of the offices of the borough of Feijenoord, which offer visitors a view of nearly all Master-Class locations.  


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"In the USA alone, well over 3 million acres of open land are lost each year to suburbanisation" (Kenneth Frampton in Producing The Contemporary City, 2007)