The radical transformation of the Bogaardplein into a green, active city park is the long-awaited kick-off for the further development of the Rijswijk city center In De Bogaard. Structural greening is the starting point for optimising the livability and resilience of the city. By interweaving as much nature as possible with the functional aspects of the city park as a social hub, a place to meet and relax, for sports and play, sustainable objectives for the city are also achieved. These include climate adaptation, resistance to heat stress and rainwater harvesting, and the promotion of biodiversity, health and well-being.
Instead of advertising and attending trade fairs as a municipality to attract developers and show the potential of this old shopping center, another radical action was resolutely chosen here: to transform the parking lot near the mall into an active green park. By green- ing first and creating good quality of life and a destination for the neighbourhood, the city could proceed with an ambitious densification including many homes and optimisation of the shopping center. Praise should be given to the Municipality of Rijswijk for making this well-considered and economic choice that benefits climate, biodiversity, people and economy. In this example, landscape served as a basis for economic growth.
Located atop the existing parking garage, this new city park will have a sloping surface with a wide variety of greenery, from large trees and shrubs to flowering plants and grasses. Through the space meander beautiful, paved pathways that connect the different functionalities of the park. This creates a recreational route for cyclists and pedestrians within a verdant oasis and with ever-changing views. On the way to the shopping area, or crossing the city park on a bicycle, this new city landscape invites you to take a deep breath and enjoy a moment purely in the greenery. Moreover, the city park is a destination in itself; an attractive refuge for young and old for healthy exercise and daily relaxation.
Across the park is a looping route with various sports and play facilities, spaces for picnicking, sunbathing or just relaxing in the shade. There will be a spacious terrace with an amphitheater and a new water element where children can play safely on hot days while their guardians relax on a bench supervising them. Rijswijk will also have a weekly organic market in this new city park, connecting the old functionality of Bogaardplein and its adjacent shopping area with the city’s healthy, green future strategy.
By redefining the existing character of the place and bringing more green into the center of Rijswijk, the city park responds to contemporary issues of climate adaptation, biodiversity and health and well-being for the future. The park’s current functions will be revitalised, while new activities will also find their place in the city park.
Design year: 2017
Year Completed: 2022