By deciding the future of Haarlem together at the City Makers Congress, “citizens should have more room to say what they want” | The weekly Haarlem

HAARLEM On Friday the 10th and Saturday the 11th of June, Haarlem will be dominated by the first Stadmakers Congress. Days filled with beautiful meetings between enterprising residents and professionals, with the aim of shaping the city more together. With this initiative, a number of city builders want to contribute to solutions to important themes that play a role in Haarlem, such as care, green, young, food, cooperation with the neighborhood and creating a city together.

City builder and organizer Minouche Besters: “There is so much going on in our city. Due to the great need to bring all these initiatives together and to further exploit their common strength, the very first Stadmakers Congress Haarlem has now been held. As urban builders, we are all committed to a more equal, habitable, happy and beautiful neighborhood or city. From creative to social entrepreneurs involved, from developers to government officials and from active residents to representatives from care and education. Our active App group now consists of almost 140 Haarlem city makers! ”

BEAUTIFUL SCENE Minouche: “It often works better if you take good initiatives together, such as producing more local food, making the elderly less lonely or making the city greener. Together you know more and get more done. In addition, these two days are a wonderful stage to show what is already happening in Haarlem, and to inspire others to participate as well. ”

On Friday, various professionals, developers, governments and other organizations will meet in De Koepel. Active participants that day – and involved in the theme Together with the neighborhood – are city architect Willem Hein Schenk and development manager Coen Hofland in area developer AM. Willem Hein: “I would like to pray for all the good collaborations in Haarlem, and that is why I completely agree. Very nice and valuable to measure each other’s ambitions, desires and ideas in a looser, informal setting and connect them with each other. As an architect, I am concerned with the future of the city. When we want to further develop spatial quality, all forms of societal development play a role. It is good to involve all parties, especially the residents, much more! ”

MORE SPACE Coen: “I myself am the co-game leader at the Area Development for Dummies session that morning. In this common game, everyone gets their own role and interest in the development of a new home-work-living area. You discover what happens if you do not make choices, and then it’s not just about money, but also about social support, spatial quality and sustainability. “Willem Hein:” I think that citizens should also have much more space for to say what they want. Their rights are insufficiently included in the municipality’s participation meetings. Let’s start the conversation these days based on alternative scenarios. For example, by doing more research by design and showing much more how something can be. way you create a wish that if it can be like that I will like it and I will participate.As long as you inform people well, explain what it’s about and ask them to participate. “You really think about a common interest. Yet people can often only bring their private interests to the stage at a participatory meeting!”

The great thing about this urban creation conference is that we can connect residents, the municipality and the market

Coen: “It is precisely the challenge of participation; the ability to separate individual interest from public interest. People often think that they are not heard, but one simply can not respect everyone’s individual interests. We are working on developing a part of the city with everyone involved. This means that you will soon have to park a few blocks away, otherwise a community house will remove part of your view. But if you do not involve people in it and do not explain that there can also be something beautiful in return, such as a greener street or the preservation of greenery outside the city as a result, then it does not work. If we all realize this, we will take action. That’s why I like this conference so much. We really need to create a connection between the three important stakeholders in the area development: residents, the municipality and professionals. ”

BURGER ABOVE Willem Hein: “When we can point out the difference between individual interest and collective desire, we ask them to look further than they usually do. Professionals need to facilitate this, and in research by design we can draw variants, make pictures, maybe go on an excursion and start trusting each other so much more. I find the triangle that Coen draws very fascinating. For me, the citizen comes first there. ” Coen: Let’s take advantage of these days to get to know new people and initiatives and thus bring our spatial and social ambitions together. It will only make our neighborhood stronger! ”

For the full program of Stadmakerscongres Haarlem and to order tickets, visit

By Sabina Bles, Word Office

Leave a Comment