BUUR has been appointed to make the plan for a new district Ecowijk Gantoise, promoted by a public-private partnership between the urban planning agency of the city of Ghent and a private developer. Partners of Driekwart Groen, Mint, Hydroscan and Ingenium give technical support on ecology, mobility, water management and clean energy.
The goal is to realize an exemplary district for the 21st century, with a minimum ecological footprint, responding to high ambitions of the City of Ghent in terms of sustainability. The new residential district will transform the former football fields of KAA Ghent, offering a variety of housing for 300 families with an urban density of 60 houses/ha.
The district is structured around a central park area. The park design refers to the site’s original sport activities, as playful elements along the so-called ‘Gantoise trail’. Broad park alleys connect to the neighboring context, with direct links to public transport and main bicycle routes. Two small squares host district-level functions, such as a barn, childcare facilities, coworking space and small retail. The neighbourhood is entirely car-free, with child-oriented green public spaces instead of the classical street feature. The rear facades of the housing give onto shared courtyards that promote collective use and management. The sustainability ambitions are translated at the technical level with a collective energy system, integral water retention and biodiversity. Parking is fully organised underground. A low parking ratio is compensated for by shared cars, shared bicycles and other facilities.
The urban planning permit for the public space and the housing allotment have been submitted early 2017. In the meantime the private developer has appointed architects for the preliminary architectural design. The city has prepared the design of the district park. BUUR will stay implicated in the project as quality supervisor.