We are a multidisciplinary design agency with over 40 years of expertise in landscape architecture and urban planning. Based in Amsterdam, we work on a wide spectrum of international and national assignments.

Craftsmanship

Harmonising Nature and Culture

Cultural Memory

Radical Contextualism

Poetic Clarity

Empowering Communities

Craftsmanship

We see our profession as practising a craft, which we master along two axes: the dimension of material versus that of method.

‘Method’ has a careful relationship with our vision of craft. We identify ourselves as makers. Craftspeople. Designers who practise and master their art. Merely presenting images, visions and vistas is not an end for us. We prove, on the contrary, that we are capable of actually building designs. Testing has our penchant. Ideas leave our drawing board to be tested against the practice in the form of a 3D model, model or mock-up. This culminates in a method in which we combine innovative engineering approaches with contextually based designs.

We also understand ‘material’ in the sense of the physicality of a project. For us, materialisation, refinement and attention to detail are decisive. We are proud of our artistic drive and daring. And because we conceive of our profession as a craft, we can express our cutting-edge engineering skills. We see craftsmanship and precision in it as inseparable from how we complete and supervise projects. The manifestation of all these views together secures the future-proofing of our designs.

Radical Contextualism

Every site is different. A summation of subsoil, history, users and spatial elements. We are convinced that a good project starts with a holistic reading of the site and its context. With an eye for soil, hydrology, ecology, economy and social situation.

For us, the principles of the philosophical movement of Radical contextualism are eminently applicable to our work. This movement assumes that what is ‘true’ can only be determined within a particular context. The same applies when designing a landscape, urban district or site.

Where principles are interchangeable between different sites, a design never is. Each design is the synthesis of ideas and local conditions and emerges from the site’s unique narrative. Instead of writing a completely new story, we strive to add another chapter. Giving a new cachet and allowing itself to be reread. Sometimes this requires a plot twist, sometimes just a paragraph – to complete a story that is already wonderful.

Harmonising Nature and Culture

A paradigm shift is needed to move towards a new balance between nature and culture. We see ourselves as advocates of that shift. In our eyes, landscape architects fulfil an indispensable role: as designers of the living environment. We explicitly contribute to raising awareness of that role. We do not approach this mission as window dressing – we experience it as a real driving force, forming the base of everything we do.

We work at the interface between culture and nature. In doing so, design fulfils the need for guidance in climate adaptation processes and increasing biodiversity. To nature, we feel a certain humbleness and the urgency to allow natural processes and players in our urban environment.

In doing so, we create the conditions for a new equilibrium. Not grafted on the pursuit of our own comfort. But a holistic approach that balances all interests and ensures harmony between humans and other species.

Poetic Clarity

In a world that seems to get more complex every day, we believe in the landscape as the communal base of all nature and life. Our aim is to create recognisability with a peaceful, democratic and inclusively designed public space focused on humanity.

Clarity characterises the signature with which we aim to answer complex spatial issues. We recognise the need for timeless design as an intervention against cluttering our everyday living environment. Where landscape architecture risks emphasising graphic composition, we make an effort to design in four dimensions. A choreography of the landscape in which movement and time play a central role. A spatial design that actually breaks free from the flat surface.

Clarity arises when we make choices. For recognisable contrasts or pronounced emptiness. And also at the level of lines: more intense, brighter, more powerful. We get to the essence by celebrating the beauty of the landscape with precise interventions. Logical choices with a strong poetic charge: our office’s signature.

Cultural Memory

‘The landscape bears witness to the passing of time; it contains a living memory of all who have lived in it.’ (Tim Ingold, anthropologist) This cultural memory holds traces of something larger than our senses can perceive. We build on the story of a place. Not by conservation or reconstruction, but by assigning a future proof role to cultural heritage. We add a new chapter and make history accessible and tangible.

For us, every design starts with examining the place’s natural and cultural elements, traditions and uses. In it, we explicitly look for layered qualities. A method that enables us to bring to light the hidden attributes of a site.

Our strength lies in untangling time-related complexities. We curate cultural heritage with precision and conceptual clarity to make history accessible and experienceable. Besides creating conditions for use, it is essential to ensure a gradual transformation. By adding a new chapter, we can offer meaningful experiences and new memories.

Empowering Communities

Besides designing places, we also take care of directing processes in time and space. Crucial in this is the role of users – in the broadest sense of the word. We design for the multicultural society that is the Netherlands. Therefore, we encourage the diversity of opinions and experiences of all those involved.

We consider those opinions and experiences to enrich our design. Our responsibility is to weigh and integrate diverse interests into our processes and plans. Because the various communities have direct input in this, it allows them to contribute noticeably to change.

In doing so, we act as a mediator between people, landscape and nature. In this role, we are adept at organising and leading participation processes. We take those processes seriously: we listen to diverse voices and thus offer a platform to different communities. These are not always communities of people – landscape or nature can also be the ‘minority’.

Our primary mission is to connect. Places, people and nature. Pivotal is creating conditions for sustainable use and allowing a gradual transformation.

We believe in craftsmanship. That’s how we create distinct, uncluttered compositions. Poetically clear. Pairing remarkable ideas with good design and particular attention to detail and material. As our answer to today’s challenges.