Category Archives: planned communities

The New Avant-Garde Markthal in Rotterdam

This month a cutting edge piece of prominent architecture has opened in Rotterdam in the Netherlands. A giant horseshoe arch which houses a food court market the size of a soccer field below, is made up of apartment dwellings with open air balconies above. The food market will be open seven days a week and there is a large amount of underground parking below.

For those who buy or rent the new apartments contained in the structure, they will have the ultimate opportunity to eat, shop, or work local with fantastic views of the city.

There will be 100 fresh produce units, 15 food shops, 8 restaurants, 228 apartments and 1,200 parking places included in this market hall concept.

The market is to sell “fresh and affordable fair products” arranged with bread and dairy in the hall’s center, fish and meat on one diagonal, and potatoes, vegetables, fruit and delicacies on the other diagonal. Four separate fresh produce units will be spread out across the floor for seasonal products or specials.

The arch is ten stories tall.

This fearless architecture food center is sure to become a huge tourist attraction in Rotterdam.


To learn more: http://markthalrotterdam.nl/en/

MIT’s Kent Larson Shows Us a Glimpse of a More Efficient Tomorrow

At present, urbanization around the globe appears to be an unstoppable trend.

Architect Larson wants us to have the good things we like about cities and remove the bad things like too much space for cars and emissions. Using old-Paris as an example, neighborhoods are set up providing compact urban cell inhabitants of 20,000, or so, with everything they need in just a 5 or 10 minute walk.

He says that the city design of the 50s and 60s which is continuing to be built, is obsolete. The innovations that could make the city of the future more desirable will work a lot like a small village of the past.

He did not discuss food in particular, although he shows some urban farming on a top level space. Food stores would obviously be included in his compact urban cells.

In this video, Larson discusses:

  • “Robot” apartments with movable walls
  • Folding cars
  • Driverless cars communicating with pedestrians
  • Melbourne Laneways
  • Boulder’s bike paths and bike-share program

The 2011 Solar Decathlon: Three Entrants Which Included Food Growing in their Models

Each year, as a blogger, I’ve enjoyed covering the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon which takes place on the National Mall in Washington D.C. In this post, I’ve picked three of the college student’s models which each incorporated gardens into their plans. At the end is a link to view all of the contest model videos, if you wish, including entries from China, New Zealand, and Canada, too!

We should all pay attention, because I do believe that small, energy efficient houses incorporating growing your own food spaces are the way of the future. A house doesn’t have to be expensive to provide reliable shelter, either, but we American’s have a hard time imagining something other than what is being thrown at us by the profit-driven developers in the housing industry.

Less will be more. Stuff will be less.
K.M.

1) The modern homestead from Appalachian State University:

2) Not surprisingly, from Middlebury, Vermont, we get a team which includes food growing in their design:

3) Florida International University’s model also has an outdoor eating garden: