Leonie Martens

Leonie Martens (°2000, Ronse) has joined the AWB team as a research collaborator since September 2023. She is interested in the role of architecture in social issues, focusing not only on 'what is' but also on 'what is not (yet)'. As a designer and researcher, she collaborates on various projects, such as the final editing for the publication of the Open Space Platform and the Living Lab Herk and Mombeek. The Living Lab brings together local knowledge and research, across different sectors. Leonie will be involved in process supervision within this project. She is also interested in working on cartographic research in which the role of drawings and maps goes beyond representing knowledge, but can also be used as a communication tool.


In June 2023, she graduated summa cum laude as Master of Architecture at the University of Antwerp. Within her masterthesis, together with a fellow student, she investigated answers to vacancy in the commercial centre of Boom. Using a broad analysis, she tried to understand the vacancy, starting from the specific conditions of the municipality. Various actions then responded to this analysis to provide a response to vacancy. These actions seek to look at vacancy from a bottom-up perspective, for example by collecting the needs of the neighbourhood and imagining possible future infills. Based on the analysis and actions, strategies were designed for the municipality to tackle vacancy in the commercial centre. Leonie eventually received the 'Architecture and environment' prize for this, awarded by Atelier Stadsbouwmeester Antwerpen.