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16 projects selected in Architecture round 1 – 2020

23 april 2020

The quality of the first Architecture round of 2020 was high and concerned relatively large project applications. Sixteen proposals, slightly fewer than half the total number of applications submitted, were granted awards by the Architecture committee. Coordinator Maarten Tas reflects on the first round of the year.

general impression
The first round had a great diversity of subjects and themes. We received applications focused on making property more sustainable, on radical repurposing, but also on innovative production methods and techniques: applications in which architecture was central as a public concern or instead as a place for reflection and contemplation. The degree of development of the applications was also very diverse; some proposals were entirely ready to go, while others required more preliminary research first. More than half of all applications submitted related to the objective of research, analysis and reflection. Twelve starting grants were also applied for. A remarkably large number of applications looked at the past from a relevant topical starting point, with the aim of learning lessons for the future. This is in line with a broader interest that the Fund has identified within the professional field for reappraising and building on existing values and qualities.

diversity and inclusion
In terms of diversity and inclusion, three selected applications stand out. In the 'Monumentum' project, the National Museum of World Cultures wants to initiate a dialogue about our colonial past and how this continues to affect the present time, on the basis of the architecture of the museum's own accommodation. In the project 'STADverkenning Gezonde Gebiedsontwikkeling' by Platform STAD, soft, social values are made measurable and applicable with the prospect of future (inner-city) urban developments in The Hague. Finally, 'Dutch Water Works World Wide' by nai010 publishers aims to provide an overview of the Dutch influence on the realization of hydraulic defence systems around the world, including critical reflection on this influence from the local context.

Other examples of projects being supported that respond well to current, socially relevant themes in this round are:

RAAAF - Apparently Impossible Heritage
Together with the Cultural Heritage Agency, area developer BPD, the Central Government Real Estate Agency and the Province of South Holland, RAAAF is starting a design study into seemingly impossible-to-redevelop cultural-historical buildings, for which demolition appears to be the only way out. It is searching for new design strategies and innovative precision-demolition techniques with which – thinking from a 'poetry of absence' perspective – space is created by removing elements and, in so doing, giving these buildings new meaning. With this idiosyncratic approach, RAAAF, together with the project partners involved, has opted for a radically different approach to cultural heritage, which can bring about a change within the field.

  • STADverkenning Gezonde gebiedsontwikkeling: zachte waarden meetbaar maken, Platform Stad

  • FLUX landscape architecture – Holtland
    In the Netherlands, the call for new forests is growing, from both politicians and scientists, and not only to compensate for our CO2 emissions, but also for the production of food and wood. In total, there would be a need for approximately 125,000 hectares of new forest; in other words, one-and-a-half times the size of the Veluwe. FLUX is therefore initiating a design study into this reforestation, with specific attention paid to spatial integration and the contribution of new forests to the major transition challenges. The committee expects the resulting project to make a relevant contribution to the field.

    Click here for all the projects selected in Architecture round 1 – 2020.

    The budget available for this round was € 300,000. The contributions requested ranged from € 6,500 to € 53,545. But with an average requested sum of € 20,711, these were relatively large projects. As the total of the requested amounts of the positively assessed proposals considerably exceeded the available budget for the round, prioritization was necessary. Ultimately 16 of the 38 subsidy applications processed received grants. This brings the percentage of applications receiving grants to 42%.

    COVID-19 and upcoming rounds
    Some of the projects being supported are likely to be affected during implementation by the current COVID-19 pandemic. The Fund is in contact with these applicants.

    The deadline for round 3 of the Architecture Grant Programme is 5 August 2020. In view of the COVID-19 crisis, we expect applicants to demonstrate a sense of reality and respond to current events in their submitted proposals.