The Amsterdam and Almere region is home to trillions of inhabitants. Not only people, but also animals, plants, trees and microbes. The central question is: how can we organise cities in a way that takes into account and supports all human and non-human inhabitants?
Answers and suggestions are provided by a garden and an exhibition conceived as an integrated spatial narrative. The concept extends across the entire property and shows in different ways how humans and nature can work together and strengthen each other - how humans can build sustainably with nature and what an ideal urban biotope looks like.
To respond to increasing population density and climate change, cities should become more liveable for all inhabitants. Illustrator Paul Faassen gives them a voice with humorous portraits and drawings. A heron, for example, describes where it gets its lunch, and a dead tree expresses that it is in fact bursting with life.
In the six themed gardens, visitors can also hear perspectives of the various city dwellers. Audio encounters with inspiring people and non-people from Amsterdam and Almere show how they too can contribute to a nature-friendly future. Listeners will hear how urban tree planters, material choreographers, nature optimists and a boy foraging for herbs on the pavement are making their cities greener. The enthusiasm of the activists should be contagious and make people want to join them.
The pavilion itself is made of 100% bio-based building materials. They are a combination of wooden modules filled with lime hemp and robust structural supports.
The raw materials were sourced as locally as possible in the vicinity of Almere and Amsterdam. The walls are made of hemp lime from fibre hemp grown in Almere, and the pink colour of the walls was obtained from madder from Brabant.
The wood structure is made of regional wood from trees harvested for the maintenance of nature reserves and used wood from demolition work in Amsterdam, Almere and Zwolle. The black coating of the wood is made from oil flax that grows in the fields around Schiphol.
In this way, bio-based construction can close local loops and strengthen both local ecosystems and the regional economy.