Schalkwijkerhout, Haarlem, Holland

A sustainable wooded neighbourhood

In collaboration with architectural firm Defeche van der Putte, Boom Landscape designed a woodland in the city. The new neighbourhood, on the site of a former office complex, is an attractive, vibrant, sustainable and mixed-use development. It will feel both urban and like a woodland.

Living and working

There are two types of dwellings in Schalkwijkerhout: single-family attached houses, each of the six blocks having enclosed gardens, and compact low-rise apartments, each of the two having flexible spaces for businesses in their double-height ground floors. Two outdoor public zones draw the buildings together and bring the residents together.

Green and low traffic

The primarily residential neighbourhood has an open structure and continuous greenery throughout the small-scale pedestrian spaces. A central green axis links the Spaarne Gasthuis hospital in the north with the shopping centre to the south. The shared public space in Schalkwijkerhout is a low traffic area:  all main areas are for pedestrians and cyclists, while other traffic remains at the edges and is directed into parking areas under the housing blocks.

A wooded carpet

Schalkwijkerhout’s greenery is rich and varied with low-lying plants typical of a forest and a variety of trees that are richly coloured in the autumn. The forest forms a carpet over all the streets, squares, enclosed gardens and courtyards, and the lush vegetation carries on into the architecture where roofs and roof-top terraces are covered in similar greenery.

Nature inclusive

Private and public spaces are demarcated in natural ways: spacious tree-lined pavements on the city side and more wooded spaces on the interior. The inner grounds undulate lightly, with the higher areas having forest plants. This gives a sense of individualized forecourt space to the single family homes, while also adding plant diversity and making the public space seem bigger. The paths are paved in ‘grindpave’ (a porous asphalt with a fixed gravel surface) and transition naturally into the planted grounds. The result is a natural-looking landscape that is still accessible to vehicular traffic when necessary.

Sustainable and rainproof

Schalkwijkerhout is a sustainable urban neighbourhood. There is room for solar panels and a neighbourhood (electric) car-sharing plan. And there is room for rain: a slow system that buffers, filters, and recycles rainwater.

Location: Schalkwijkerhout, Haarlem, the Netherlands

Client: Wilma Wonen

In collaboration with: DVDP architectuur & stedenbouw

Area: 2.3 ha / 23,000 m2

Programme: 125 single family dwellings, 136 apartment units, office space and public space

Design team: Philomene van der Vliet, Jan Maas, Fangyi Zheng, Stathis Zimpounoumis

Renderings: A2Studio


Location: Schalkwijkerhout, Haarlem
Client: Wilma Wonen
In collaboration with: DVDP architectuur & stedenbouw
Design Team: Philomene van der Vliet, Stathis Zimpounoumis