||Cushman & Wakefield
About the project
The Groot Handelsgebouw, an iconic Rotterdam landmark since 1953, stands as one of the Netherlands’ largest multi-company buildings, housing over 450 companies. Preserving its monumental values while ensuring it remains future-proof poses a unique challenge. The historic elevated driveway, once bustling with trucks unloading goods, has long since fallen into disuse. Our mission is to embark on a placemaking journey and reimagine this space, breathing new life into it for the benefit of the community. Inspired by the vision of experiencing nature’s beauty through the changing seasons, we conceptualized the transformation of the driving street into a 300-metre-long avenue, now known as Maaskantpark. This green oasis within the city boasts an enchanting array of trees and flowering plants, nurtured in containers to ensure a vibrant and ever-changing landscape throughout the year. The park is designed to be a captivating tapestry of colors and diversity, offering a rich experience to visitors in every season. Incorporating various seating areas, thoughtfully interspersed throughout Maaskantpark, creates an inviting environment for casual gatherings, meetings, and 1-on-1 discussions. Additionally, the inclusion of a jeu de boules court offers a space for moments of leisure and play amid work and activities.
Beyond the physical transformation, the property owner has embraced the theme of nature and greenery within the building. To foster a sense of community, they have initiated monthly lectures and guided tours for tenants and users. This ongoing engagement seeks to enrich the occupants’ understanding and appreciation of the natural surroundings while fostering a sense of belonging and pride in their shared space.