2005, Utrecht, The Netherlands
The plan for the public space of the new neighborhood Groen Zuilen combines the serenity and ambiance of a beguinage with a modern comfortable residential district.
The quiet green neighborhood is enclosed by a wide hedge of field maple’s.The architect Machiel van der Torre has designed the dwellings with internal parking, hence reducing the amount of cars on the streets which provides a more tranquil feel to the area.
The two key internal public spaces are designed as avenues consisting of majestic trees (sophora and gleditsias) placed on a green carpet of grass. Both types of trees have a light translucent canopy which enhances the feeling of dappled light and space. The spring blossom and the coloration of the leaves in autumn give the neighborhood a strong sense of the seasons.
In addition to the avenues there is a village green which is surrounded by a hedge. It incorporates large trees, benches and two flower gardens planted with azaleas and hydrangea.