Spoorzone in Zwolle is undergoing a major overhaul. The area – sandwiched between the historic city center and the IJssel – is still unknown to many, but must develop into an urban hotspot where life, innovation, culture and knowledge meet. Fakton supervises the selection procedure for the redevelopment on behalf of NS.
Zwolle in Overijssel is best known among most Dutch people as the Hanseatic City. The city’s long history can still be seen in the old center surrounded by the Stadsgracht, including the characteristic star shape of a medieval walled city.
The area around Zwolle’s central station appeals less to the imagination. The municipality and NS Vastgoed want to change that with the redevelopment of district Z (West), Werkplaatsen and Lurelui (North), all located in the so-called Spoorzone.
The area offers development space for 725 to 850 homes, approx. 40,000 m2 gross floor area (GFA) for work and approx. 30,000 m2 BFA for facilities, including training.
The innovative heart
Zwolle municipality and NS Vastgoed are working together on the task. The plan must be completed in 2024. In any case, it is not lacking in ambition.
“The rail zone in Zwolle will be one of the greenest urban station areas in the Netherlands,” says Chantal Snelling-Berg, senior development manager at NS Stations. “We want to make this an inspiring, high-quality area that will become the innovative heart of the region.”
She states that the “raw character” of District Z and the Werkplaatsen are “excellent for new functions such as creative makers, cultural entrepreneurs and education”. To this end, the program focuses mainly on attracting entrepreneurs and people, especially in manufacturing and creative industries, culture, education, housing and hospitality.
Jasper van Emstede, also senior development manager at NS Stations, adds that the Spoorzone should grow into a lively area in this way. “Not only for residents of Zwolle, but also for travelers from all over the Netherlands. This development plays an important role in our ambitions in mobility, quality of life and sustainability.”
“Hereby, the city and the region seize the opportunity to realize a significant innovation district.”
The development of the locations also connects the Spoorzone and the historic city center “to form Zwolle’s new city center and the center of the region”, says Marjolijn Helmich, senior project manager of Zwolle Municipality.
“Hereby, the city and the region seize the opportunity to realize a significant innovation district, where economy, education and culture come together, and the unique innovative and creative power of the Zwolle region becomes visible,” says Helmich. “With a special mix of housing for different target groups and new housing concepts, this location gives climate-proof urbanization a new face.”
Realize the potential
Before that happens, no party has yet been found that knows how to translate all these fine words into reality. Zwolle gets help in selecting the best candidate from Fakton Consultancy, the consultancy department for the specialist in spatial development.
Fakton has been given the mandate to supervise the selection of a market party or a combination of market parties to undertake the development and operation of the proposed new urban hotspot on behalf of NS Stationer.
The application for the selection procedure was opened at the beginning of this month. Under the supervision of Fakton, NS Vastgoed (part of NS Stations) and the municipality of Zwolle select a market party or a combination of market parties. The selection criteria are quality, tender and execution power.
“It is good that this promising station location is becoming available for a new future”, says Aeisso Boelman, partner at Fakton. “The location has everything to realize its potential. We are well aware that, in addition to an attractive location, the selection procedure must also be attractive. Therefore, we organize a process that is as ‘lean-and-mean’ as possible, with a keen eye for the interests of the market parties.”