In June 2010, FABRICations won the most important prize for Dutch young architects: The Prix de Rome, a more than 200 year old award, assigned once every four years.

Participants were challenged to design a square for August Allebéplein area (Amsterdam), with particular attention to reconsidering the role of the project on a social and cultural level. FABRICations responded with a strategy in which local bottom-up initiatives are linked to global top-down trends: a flexible plan to bring together local stakeholders and global developers.

First the area was approached enhancing its potential for a multicultural expansion of the city of Amsterdam. As a consequence, free zones for enterprise were used to populate the inner courtyard of the existing buildings, and to establish the neighborhood as a micro business district.

To empower the public spaces, instead, the existing slabs were used to create places of encounter, with different levels of accessibility and privacy. This fragmented hierarchy of public spaces was dominated by the Bazaar Mountain, a scenic and functional landscape-looking element, which ensures the integration of public transport and life, work and leisure.

To respond to the different strategical choices, water management was also organized differently. On one hand a technological solution enables maximum densification on the east side of Bazaar Mountain. On the other hand an ecological strategy that completely softens the landscape is implemented on the west side of the mountain.

Location: Amsterdam, Netherland

Program: Square redevelopment, Competition

Year: 2010

Commissioner: Prix de Rome (Netherlands)

Design Directors: Eric Frijters, Olv Klijn

Team: Carola Böker, Peter Botz, Bas Driessen, Greta Mozzachiodi, Marie Rannou, Angela Sondervan, Laura Caputo, Katerini Duničková, Mikkel Horsbol Lauridsen, Nuria Ripoll, Iris Wijn

Prizes: Winner

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