In the last cold winter week of 2018, GreenfieldCities visited De Ceuvel in Amsterdam. The site describes itself as a clean-tech ‘playground’ for innovation and creativity and a showcase for sustainable circular urban development. The former shipyard has been transformed by and for a community of volunteers with a passion for circularity.
De Ceuvel has areas for experiments related to urban food production and water re-use as well as a café, a hotel and meeting rooms. What is special about the site is that all infrastructure has been installed above the ground due to digging restrictions on the polluted shipyard. In order to be able to conduct experiments, De Ceuvel has a special arrangement with the municipality of Amsterdam to function as a partially regulatory exempt area. This fosters innovation, and fuels the creativity and sense of responsibility and ownership of the community.
We have had the opportunity to learn more about the concept, innovations and experiments through an inspiring meeting and site tour with Chander van der Zande, consultant of Metabolic, and member of De Ceuvel’s board. It was an inspiring afternoon that has allowed us to learn, to identify similarities with- and differences between De Ceuvel and the Campus in Jordan, and to search for points of collaboration.