Learning from Robin Hood Gardens


Gilbert Berthold

Robin Hood Gardens is marked by a conflict between a cultural heritage inhabited by a vibrant community and a high demand on new homes in its neighbourhood. “Learning from Robin Hood Gardens” calls for a rethinking of conversion to preserve the existing values, to meet contemporary socio-cultural demands and to react on the housing shortage of the city council. It understands the issue of preservation as a rethinking of the concept and theory behind the built substance. Rather than the conservation of the mere built form and spaces. Significant thoughts of the Smithsons are re-visioned, approved, criticised and adapted. Throughout his process four main points are identified which allow for a layering of specific concepts in relation to the theoretical work of the Smithsons. Together they form an urban development plan and phasing strategy which questions the lack of urban planning in the outlined ‘master plan’, by the city council.

The plan counteracts the fragmentation of the urban fabric by reconnecting isolated neighbourhoods through a series of strategy’s.  It also provides a large variety of housing types as a differentiated alternative to a typological monotony. This supports a mix of social classes that antagonises the trend of ‘gated-communities’. The Project shows that it is possible to maintain the existing vibrant community, and the wild grown park at its heart. It is possible to sustain an important part of cultural heritage and to achieve the demanded density of 1700 homes on eight hectares. 

 

Advisors: Nasrine Seraji, Stefan Gruber, Lisa Schmidt-Colinet

 

Learning from Robin Hood Gardens


Gilbert Berthold