Woerden - Netherlands

Urban Renewal - 'Defensie" island


Woerden is a city in the central Netherlands situated on the river Oude Rijn. The Defensie Island, within the medieval city walls, is a former military area where a central warehouse of the army was established to repair, wash and distribute uniforms, blankets, tents, etc.


In 2005 the municipality of Woerden bought the area from the national government and five years later has instigated a design competition to procure a design response that should achieve a high quality new residential area for the city. We won the second prize.


Our project proposal focused on integrating some of the historical buildings in the whole design concept that proposes a mixed used programme to the central area of the island and residential buildings along the waterfront.


The public spaces surrounded by the new and old buildings give a pleasant experience. They compose a series of intimate spaces, which are set in motion by the pedestrians giving them a variety of sightings, from small enclosure squares to the open spaces and the relation with water.


Competition 2d prize

In collaboration with:

Soeters Van Eldonk architecten

Moriko Kira architect

Wessel de Jong architecten


Commissioned by: