3202 Reimerswaalhof Fences, 2011

Ymere en Bouwfonds

Defining the private spaces in the courtyards of Reimerswaal.

Both the play sculpture, and courtyard fence are fused together - combining the private and public functions of street furniture. The buildings around Reimerswaalhof courtyard, were designed by Mecanoo architects. These buildings include social housing, private sector housing, wheelchair accessible housing, apartments, an office space and an elementary school. Houses and additional facilities were designed to integrate public and private components through shared spaces.

The fence marks a transition between the private features that are typical for an enclosed yard and the public character of the space around it. The play sculpture by Studio Makkink & Bey was designed to invite the schoolchildren of Sint Lukas elementary school to share their domain with the children who live there. The children can easily slide back and forth over the borderline between private and public domain. By doing so, they playfully soften and smudge the boundaries of ownership.

Fences and sculptures show kinship with the architecture of the surrounding buildings, they form a family together. Individually, the railings each maintain their own character and depict their own story, while the line drawings in steel rods create perspective and a spatial effect. Domestic elements were used to make the public space feel safe and comfortable.