The center of Leidsche Rijn is one of the most important densification locations in Utrecht. The ambition of Utrecht to be a healthy city is linked to a good urban environment in the field of health, movement, sustainability, climate, energy and mobility. Vestibule exemplifies these ambitions and is characterized by a series of outdoor spaces with different conditions. These conditions are determined by sun, shade, wind, rain, orientation and sight. The use of the outdoor areas, the atmosphere and the planting choice will differ depending on the conditions. The planting forms a carpet at different height levels, but has a subdued character in terms of color and texture. Together with the planting in the façades, the gardens form a tranquil green inner world within the building block.
An important part of the plan is a collective entrance on the Madridstraat, which is designed as a winter garden. This space forms the heart of the building and is the direct reason behind the name Vestibule. Both entrances to homes and stairwells are positioned on the winter garden. The area has, like the other outdoor spaces, a specific condition and is, as it were, a transition between the outside and the inside. The plants here get protection from the cold and can grow in a partial indoor climate. The atmosphere is warm, rich and opulent. Planting with large leaves, expressive forms and colorful flowers create an almost tropical effect.
In addition to a striking entrance and a pleasant place to stay, the winter garden offers opportunities to shape the ambitions in the field of circularity and health. For example, rainwater is collected and used in the gardens and the air quality is improved through planting. Nature in the immediate vicinity of your home or workplace adds to the quality of the living environment.
Utrecht, Leidsche Rijn Centum, commissioned by ‘Heijmans ontwikkeling’, i.c.w. Studionedots and FABRICations, images Studio Prins, park design, circular city, healthy city, climate-adaptive city, public space, transformation, densification, Flux landscape architecture Utrecht 2018