West 8 helps preparing sustainable Zernike Campus for next decades
On April 18, the Municipality of Groningen, the University of Groningen and the Hanze University of Applied Sciences revealed the latest plan for Zernikelaan, part of Zernike Campus. Together, the clients allocate €15 million to the project. Since 2015, West 8 has been reviewing the original master plan originated from 1999 to ensure the continuity of the design for the next decades. The construction of the project is estimated to start in 2019 and will take approximately three years to complete.
Ever since West 8 started to be involved in the project, to provide safe environments for cyclists and pedestrians has been the main theme. While the original Masterplan made the heart of the campus a car-free zone, the highly frequented 1.6 km promenade is still shared by busses and bicycles. Up to now, the cyclists and vehicle mixed traffic situation was not yet fully optimized. This recent extended and reviewed design intends to provide the necessary measures to achieve a more moderated traffic flow, such as new hedges flanking the bus lane. The intersection of the neighboring highway and Zernikelaan will also be amended to create a safer traffic situation.
Next to improvements of traffic, the street will be transformed into a boulevard and its adjacent spaces will become greener and more accessible. Along the water basins which are created as a water management measure, new terraces will be added in order to bring students, employees and visitors closer to the water edge. This heart of the campus shall become the perfect place for users to socialize and relax, to foster creativity and innovation.
In the last 18 years, West 8’s master plan has already transformed the campus from a rigid urban grid with anonymous buildings into a green campus, a park-like setting with continuous lawns and greenways acting as strategic landscape planning, including a network of mixed-use 6 meter wide campus paths, guided by low hedges, spans over the campus. It is the perfect environment for the contemporary science buildings that confine the heart of the campus and ensure its human scale.
Click here to read RTV Noord’s article on this.