DS is an office for landscape architecture. We research and design. Our working field varies from large-scale landscapes to public spaces. With our designs we create new landscapes for everything that lives! We make landscapes for people, plants and animals. The three pillars of our work are biodiversity, anchoring and innovation. Our plans are robust, they stand the test of time.
Biodiversity is central to our designs. Nature gives us what we need: food, medicine, clean air, shade and a better environment. All species, including plant and animal species, keep each other in balance. The more species, the better this is for the quality of our existence. That is why preserving and increasing biodiversity is of great importance. In our projects we ensure that habitats for plants and animals are safeguarded and where possible improved. In addition to maintaining and improving habitats, we also advise owners and residents on how they can contribute to biodiversity.
The concept is applicable in time; a good design anchors the place permanently in history. This creates continuity: past and present merge in the plans for the future. Anchoring is connecting with existing networks of, among other things, ecology, infrastructure and water. A good design is therefore specific and unique.
Innovation is the smile in the process. Because without innovation no development and without development no progress. We come to the table when change is desired, innovation is in our blood. That is why we are constantly looking for the smartest design proposals.
Landscape architecture is the profession of designing with urban ecosystems. It’s time for architects and urbanists, commissioners and the building industry to join in, because nature inclusive design leads to better quality of life for all beings. Urban ecosystems are extensive and improving them is a complex task. But many small projects together do have a positive impact. This insight made Maike van Stiphout decide to create this guide for city builders. The knowledge acquired through the years of practice, crystallised into a compact, practical theory in which you follow three rules to make a nature inclusive project. An easy start for beginners. You’ll get inspired by beautiful examples of the last decennia and amazing student projects. For developers and commissioners it is useful to create the best proposals and answer the right questions to the designers. For all of you it is a talking piece on the table.
Author: Maike van Stiphout | Publisher: nextcity.nl | ISBN: 978-90-9031616-1 | year: 2019
‘Create landscape first and then build!’ is our motto of the 12 years long planning and building process of Park Brederode. The project is a clear example of this attitude, where the landscape design works as a framework for both urbanization pattern and architecture. After 100 years of park manipulation, today’s landscape merges back into the dune landscape. The main landscape intervention is the extension of the dunes and the new creek at its feet. Design pays attention to the interesting history of the site too. The location used to be a bleachery before it became the place for mansions of the rich Amsterdam people. After which it turned into a psychiatric hospital. The layered history is still traceable in the landscape design and urban pattern, giving meaning to the new interventions. Park Brederode is located beside the Kennemerduinen, a vast nature reserve. Due to the robust landscape design and the redevelopment of the site into a residential area, the biodiversity has improved enormously.
Assignment: Landscape design and supervising architecture | client: Park Brederode cv | Location: Bloemendaal, The Netherlands | Size: 34 ha | Status: Realized | Photographer: Walter Herfst
World Forum is a part of the international institutions zone that works together for peace and justice. The aim of the design was to create a public space that stitches all institutions together. The dune scenery of the World Forum matches the international image of the Hague as a Green city by the sea. The historical context and the scenic beauty of a dune landscape became the leading design principles that gave a recognizable identity to the public space. The urban dune theme is reflected in morphology, vegetation and natural stone paving, which create together a coherent and soft atmosphere. The necessary security measures have been seamlessly incorporated in height differences and benches have become an integral part of the safety measurements. The ‘line of peace’ became a backbone of the entire park zone. It is a mental connection between the Peace Palace and the World Forum and a walking route through the park. The lighting armatures clearly mark the continuous free space. A dotted line of light can be clearly seen from the air at night.
Assignment: New public space | Client: Government Building Agency, municipality of Den Haag and developer TCN | Location: Den Haag, The Netherlands | Size: 2,2 ha | Status: Under construction | Photographer: Walter Herfst
The Willem Alexander park is located on top of the A2 motorway. It is designed as a ridge along the Amsterdam-Rhine canal, that connects city with the surrounding landscape. The park is an important stepping stone in the local ecological network and a hot spot for migratory birds. The artificial nesting possibilities and animal passages under the roads welcome animals into the park. Selected plants provides berries and nectar, attracting lots of insects and birds. Different mowing regimes create changes in the vegetation throughout the year. Due to its altitude, Willem Alexander park can be very windy at times. The soft and wavy grasses, purple flowering shrub and perennials enhance the experience of the wind. The bowed path is towering above the fields that provides beautiful views on plants playing with the wind. The viewpoints, amphitheater, sport fields, benches and the fruit garden are attached to the central axis of the park.
Assignment: Park design | Client: Municipality of Utrecht | Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands | Size: 0,8 ha | Status: Under construction | Photographer: Walter Herfst