Community Garden

buurt tuinen transvaal (Urban Garden Transvaal, Amsterdam)

date Idea started in 2010 and the garden opened at 2011

This is an urban Garden Project in the Neighbourhood Transvaal in the East of Amsterdam. The buildings in the neighbourhood are about hundred years old; many in the architectonic style of the ‘’Amsterdam School’’. There is little Public green Space.
As the neighbourhood wasn’t one of the most developed and richest places of the city, it got a subsidized project. The project aims to improve the quality of life of the neighbourhood by using green facilities. It was part of a national policy; the VROM (department of housing, spatial planning and environment) called ‘Stimuleringfonds Volkstuinen’. With a certain amount of budget, 100,000 euro, residents of those neighbourhoods were invited to propose some ideas and realize their projects with the help of a national government subsidy . So the basis was laid down by the government. But in Transversaal the action took place by the residences. They took initiative to sit down together and to talk about how to develop the ‘’Afrikanerplein’’. A basic plan was made, containing a draft elaborated detail, budget and planting. Soil testing has been done. The middle part of the park appeared safe for growing vegetables.
The park is based in a public green area with a Triangular form. Around the space are footpaths with parking places next to them. Roads are surrounding the urban garden The area is surrounded by residential building flats.
To organize the Urban Gardening an Association was made called ‘’Vereniging Buurttuinen Transvaal’’. There is a board who rules things and sub-commissions are made for the activities taking place in the garden. To work in the garden and own a part to plant plants you can be a member and pay 10 euros.
The project could be seen as successful. It still exist, from 2011 onwards. According to Het Parool the residences think there is more involvement in the neighbourhood. Nowadays, members in the association come from more than 10 different nationalities. Different cultural interactions happen in the garden. The garden serves as a cultural exchange platform, as well as an important field for increasing social cohesion in the community.

Image (c) (Permission pending)