Sept 2018 - Extraordinary, naturally

A nun trail through the village heart

Koningsoord is the new district of Berkel-Enschot on a cultural-historical site: the lands of the former nunnery. 

How do you return an old monastery garden to a new design? An intriguing question that the urban architects of Inbo have occupied in the past 10 years. That seems like a long period, but what is long? Especially when it concerns a large residential area and a new village center, where both the shopping center and a large part of the facilities get a new place. Partly in and partly next to the converted monastery. At the end of june the first pile was driven for the first phase of Koningsoord and with that the first houses and the shopping center with apartments will be realized quickly. 

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From the beginning, the planning development has put a strong emphasis on the cultural-historical value of the sister-convent. A good example are the monumental tree avenues and the path along which the nuns used to walk from the abbey to the vegetable gardens. Such existing structures are a gift for us as urban planners, and we cherish them as a powerful element in the plan. The tree avenues are being widened into green zones that make the various neighborhoods recognizable and the nuns paths connect all important places. In the first neighborhood stylized Mary statues even come back. 

The division into smaller neighborhoods provides a lot of flexibility, which is essential in such a complicated and long-term plan. This flexible approach has already proved itself, for example when it turned out to be necessary to compact the plan. Each neighborhood can be individually designed which leads to an extra village quality that fits this place. 

Inbo is involved in all phases of the urban design. From concept to preliminary design, visual quality plan, zoning plan, final designs and layout plans for the sub-areas. The first area was designed by Inbo architects, the shopping center by Groosman. 

For further information: Menno Moerman, Joris van Loenhout