Amsterdam is the historical heart of Holland. In Haarlemmermeer, meanwhile, a number of typically Dutch characteristics come together: the land reclaimed from the water, the rigid geometry of the polder, farm life, flower culture and the Golden Age’s leisure landscapes at the water’s edge. Add to this the economic vitality of a perpetually innovative agricultural sector, as well as a concentration of offices and companies surrounding Schiphol Airport. PARK21 will draw on this wealth of experience to tell its story; the story of Holland.
The concept for the leisure program uses the flower as a bold graphic to give the destination a unique identity. The flower also illustrates how the program’s elements are organized and related to one another. The flower as a symbol not only alludes to the region’s role as the epicenter of the world’s floriculture industry, but also represents Dutch innovation and the blossoming of ideas, culture, knowledge and creativity. The organization principle during the development of this major leisure development is characterized by maximum flexibility during the creation of a strong and versatile destination in the Randstad’s landscape.
The elements of this flower represent the following principles:
- the circle: the core of the entertainment zone, publicly accessible and appealing to both visitors from within the region and tourists, for young and old.
- the petals: independent attractions of various scales will be located around the circle. These gated attractions will be grouped in small clusters that share a common theme or identity.
- the stem: the entertainment zone will be integrated into the fabric of PARK21 with links to the park layer, the recreational lake, the agricultural area in the polder layer and the different functions throughout the park.
This structure creates the opportunity to distinguish two different groups of experiences:
- immersive experiences, whereby visitors are afforded a visceral connection to the experience through attractions designed to be both entertaining and informative. These experiences will be grouped into clusters within the Leisure Zone, carrying an overarching theme that describes a facet of the Dutch experience. Presented in the form of displays, attractions and theaters, they would be developed according to the latest trends and technologies in the entertainment industry;
- interpretive experiences, which would be distributed throughout the remainder of PARK21 and beyond, like offshoots on the stem. These invite visitors to engage with the stories being told. On the ground, the story comes to life. Here the story of Holland is told through a multitude of experiential settings woven into the fabric of the park. Using this multi-staged approach to storytelling and connecting the different elements of the park through various means will enhance visitors’ understanding of the place, while also leveraging the destination’s location in the heart of this culturally rich area to present a comprehensive experience.
Finally, the physical design of PARK21 should represent the innovative spirit of Dutch culture using a design language that is in harmony with the landscape of the region. Landscape and buildings should express the story in connection with one another. From the sky, the design of the PARK21 should offer a distinct, clearly visible imprint that sets it off against the stern rigidity of the surrounding polder landscape.
The public partners that are involved can't realize PARK21 by themselves. They urgently need society. Everyone can give shape to the park. Varying from entrepeneurs large and small and investors to foundations, associations and schools. Are you inspired by the possibilities offered by PARK21? We cordially invite you to participate.