Innovation Pool | Turnhout

innovation pool

Master Plan Station Area  |  Turnhout |  Belgium

The city of Turnhout wants to develop the project area into an Innovation Pool for Life Science and Global Care. This not only involves research and innovative projects with regard to care and housing, but also new integral residential care concepts and integrated, high-quality public space. To achieve this, the master plan introduces galleries, an urban typology that was used in nineteenth century spas together with promenades and parks to connect spa hotels, casinos and ballrooms. The gallery – wandelhalle – connects the private and the public, providing a threshold space between the building and the street as well as protection for care recipients and the elderly. A covered urban space that both connects and accommodates activities and pursuits: as a terrace, a temporary concert hall or just a place to have a sandwich for lunch.

This public space becomes part of a series of urban squares, public gardens, courtyards, streets and back paths. The three buildings around the central square have urban functions that energize the area at all hours: living, working and public functions. The striking silhouettes refer to the industrial activity that took place here for such a long time. From the courtyards of these buildings you can reach the surrounding streets via gates. The streets are characterized by a mix of ground-floor housing and apartments. The small-scale and the rhythm of the brick façades suit the morphology of the area. Glimpses of backyards, old factory walls, shacks and gardens with large trees are hidden qualities that are brought to life by the new urban structure. Starting point for the transformation of this district was to create a living environment for slow-living people.

ProjectMaster Plan Station Area, Turnhout, Belgium
ClientCity of Turnhout
Design practiceBureau B+B Urbanism and Landscape Architecture, B-architecten
ArchitectDaniëlle Huls (director B+B 2009-2012)
Period2010-2013
StatusCompleted
TeamJanne van der Bom, Daniëlle Huls, Jan Maas, Saline Verhoeven, Gert-Jan Wisse, Ricky Rijkenberg, Anne-Fleur Aronstein
Programme108,220 m2 GFA: apartments, rest and nursing home, terrace houses, service flats, council flats, offices, retail and public functions