Stadspark is the biggest green lung in Antwerp’s city center. The park was designed more than 150 years ago according to the principles of the romantic landscape style, which is still strongly appreciated by visitors and local residents. The original design by Friederich Eduard Keilig from 1868 is still recognizable and relatively well preserved. Because of its great historical and botanical value, the park was protected as a monument in 2010. Unfortunately, since the 1960s the characteristic Stadspark pond was cut off from the Herentalse Vaart and the original water level reduced drastically. Due to the evolution of the greenery and changes in management, the green structure has greatly degraded. However, the Stadspark still has a high potential value in terms of ecology, education, history, soft recreation, climate adaptation and more. For all these reasons, a revaluation of the Stadspark was necessary.
The design approach for the park’s revaluation plan is based on three main strategies ‘history as a narrative for spatial quality’, ‘a diverse park for diverse users’ and ‘a climate park in the heart of the city’. These strategies envelop the common values of all the actors who look at the Stadspark from various angles. The layered vision translates into a revaluation plan for the Stadspark on the scale of the urban space. A design process tailored to the task and in dialogue with the city council, the city services, the parties involved and the wider population refines the ambitious but at the same time realistic proposal for a design and will ultimately lead to its phased realization on site.