Since 2018, a great deal of work has been carried out in Reyeroord, a post-war neighbourhood in the south of Rotterdam. The municipality of Rotterdam conducted lots of experiments in the public space, to test various challenges related to the transition in the neighbourhood, and make them tangible for residents. We jointly mapped out all the Reyeroord experiments and resources from the past five years with Reyeroord+, the core team in the Rotterdam municipality. How could Reyeroord serve as a model for other neighbourhoods? We organised the lessons learned from Reyeroord's socio-spatial journey of discovery in a series of practical Building Blocks for other neighbourhoods of the future.

The municipality of Rotterdam is exploring how specific projects result in transformation in the city, using Reyeroord as a laboratory. It may seem like an ambitious goal, but Reyeroord demonstrates that a process of trial and error involving many projects simultaneously can accelerate transitions.

Since 2018, many local experiments have been launched in Reyeroord on different scales, around different spatial transformations and of different durations. They align residents' needs with the major transformations that the neighbourhood is facing. How can Rotterdam become a socially-sustainable, circular, climate-adaptive and technologically-innovative city? Some 25 experiments have already been conducted in Reyeroord, such as an energy house that provides information about the energy transition and a materials depot for the neighbourhood.

However, the experiments had not yet been examined in a uniform manner. Architecture Workroom Brussels held working sessions and individual interviews to compile an overview of all the experiments, bundled according to the various themes of the transition. Moreover, when working on the experiments, the neighbourhood deployed a variety of resources, for example, to activate and inform residents and enable them to apply and use the experiments themselves. We bundled the experiments and resources in a logbook, in a way that Reyeroord+ could identify with, but which is also insightful for other neighbourhoods. Indeed, Reyeroord could be a major source of inspiration for other neighbourhoods of the future; in Rotterdam, but also beyond.

The logbook includes the research that led to the development of a practical toolkit containing Building Blocks: concrete tools to create change in the neighbourhood. Any other municipality can use the toolkit to set up its own neighbourhood experiments. They are tips presented in a handy format, so that local actors can start implementing them right away.

YEAR: 2022-2023

THIS PROJECT WAS A COLLABORATION BETWEEN Architecture Workroom Brussels AND Reyeroord+ / Gemeente Rotterdam.