architecture urbanism

Book chapter that discusses the notion of ‘Open Building’ through its conceptualisations and implementations in the Netherlands since the 1960s until today. It focuses on the place of dwellers’ agency in the development of residential open buildings to investigate the potential of users’ empowerment.

The ‘Open Building’ approach synthesises the principles of Habraken’s theory of ‘Support’ and ‘Infill’ developed as an alternative to post-war mass housing. Through innovations in decision-making and construction technology it promotes user participation and enables flexibility and change. The chapter discusses and compares the cases of Molenvliet, an early Open Building project for the social rental sector, and Superlofts, a series of contemporary ones where the architect and the residents have also become developers. It emphasises the political, and socio-economic context of the Open Building movement and how it has impacted the ability to meet its aims. Although its capacity to disrupt the housing system has remained limited it has expanded housing possibilities in the Netherlands.

︎ Dirk van den Heuvel + Íñigo Cornago Bonal
︎︎︎ Cornago Bonal, I. & van den Heuvel, D., 2022, Housing and the City. Borsi, K., Ekici, D., Hale, J. & Haynes, N. (eds.). 1st Edition ed. London: Routledge - Taylor & Francis Group, p. 130-144 15 p. (Critiques: Critical Studies in Architectural Humanities).

︎︎︎Link to full Chapter (TU Delft Repository)

︎ 2023
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