The Wapper, an elongated square in the center linking the Meir to the Schuttershofstraat and Hopland, will be thoroughly renovated. Because the square is intensively used by shoppers, traders and passers-by, among others, the current state is no longer sufficient, the City of Antwerp says in a press release.
Moreover, the planned works on the Rubens House are an opportunity to emphasize the archaeological-historical value of that monument on the future Wapper. In the design, the city also puts maximum effort into climate adaptation. The final design is for mid-2024.
The City of Antwerp organised a design competition for the reconstruction of the Wapper, after which it selected five design teams. Now that the College of Mayor and Aldermen has approved the specifications, the project definition and the selection report, the design teams can get to work.
The teams have three months to submit a vision statement and sketch designs. A jury will select the ultimately winning design team, but the Antwerp residents will also have the opportunity to provide feedback on the entries. The final design is currently planned for the summer of 2024.
Alderman for Public Domain Erica Caluwaerts (Open Vld): “We are transforming the stone plain that is now the Wapper into a pleasant place to stay with lots of greenery and water, surrounded by terraces. We are also making the connection to Theaterplein car-free so that our city center is even safer and more accessible. becomes for cyclists and pedestrians.”
Analysis leads to triple ambition
After a thorough analysis of the use and functions of the Wapper, three clear ambitions emerged: the Wapper as a contemporary square, the importance of the climate story and its archaeological-historical value. These ambitions include the various elements that must be present in the future design.
‘The Wapper as a contemporary square’ is about daily use and mobility. The Wapper is used intensively by shoppers, catering, traders, cyclists and pedestrians, among others. They all need to be given the necessary space. In this way, the Wapper can become a pleasant place to stay and a safe, open and logical link between the shopping area and the theater district.
A second ambition is the Wapper as a climate-robust square, with more greenery and water. For example, greening and water can create cool spots.
Historically, the square has always had a special relationship with water. In the 15th century there was a moult at that location that provided the city with drinking water. This structure is currently underground, but can again be visually incorporated into the new design of the Wapper.
In addition, the city can focus on buffering rainwater from the surrounding area.
In addition to the presence of the moult, the Rubens House and the various works of art and monuments also make it clear that the Wapper has an important historical value. These historic elements must also be integrated into the design on the renovated square.
On the look of Antwerp
- AREAS OF ANTWERP | Scheldekaaien or Scheldt Quays.
- AREAS OF ANTWERP | Zurenborg.
- AREAS OF ANTWERP | Cogels-Osylei between Berchem and Antwerp’s Zurenborg neighbourhood.
- AREAS OF ANTWERP | De Gerlachekaai at the Scheldt.
- AREAS OF ANTWERP | Sint-Andriesplein.
- ANTWERP | Part of Scheldepark / Schipperspark / Zuidpark at Gedempte Zuiderdokken now open.
- ANTWERP | Major revamp of the Meirbrug – Suikerrui – Scheldt Quays axis to complete the Via Sinjoor.
- ANTWERP | Looking for Linkeroever Railway Station.
- ANTWERP | Renovation of Scheldt Quays between Sint-Andries and ‘t Zuid.
- ANTWERP | Final design revealed for Scheldt Quays at Nieuw Zuid.
- ANTWERP | 2023-2024 Park Gedempte Zuiderdokken to have grass and water.
- ANTWERP | City forest, orchard and pond for Nieuw Zuid Scheldt Quays by 2024.
- ANTWERP | Groenplaats to become green again.
- A sneak peek into Antwerp’s renovated City Hall.
- Antwerp’s Middelheim Museum rearranges sculpture park by the end of 2023.
- Rainbow zebra crossing in Borgerhout.
- Rainbow zebra crossings of Antwerp.
- Redesigning Antwerp’s central Scheldt Quays between Noorderterras and Zuiderterras.
- Borsbeek to become Antwerp’s 10th district.
- Antwerp’s Droogdokkensite redeveloped into maritime experience area.
- VIDEO | The renovation of Antwerp City Hall.
- Antwerp-Central Railway Station to get new facade lights.
- Antwerp’s renewed Scheldt Quays at Loodswezen to get World War II victims memorial.
- ANTWERP | Bonapartedok to become centre for water sports and recreation.
- PHOTOS | Het Steen, Antwerp’s new Visitor Centre.
- VIDEO | Walking the future Spoorpark between Zurenborg (Antwerp) and Borgerhout.
- 5 spots in Antwerp to soak up the sun for free.
- VIDEO | Sunset over Antwerp’s Scheldt river.
- Antwerp to be car-free by 2024?.
- BOOK | ‘Antwerp. An Archaeological View on the Origin of the City’ by Tim Bellens.
- Antwerp landmark Boerentoren to become Art & Culture Tower by 2027.
- Antwerp to get a pedestrian and cyclist bridge over the Scheldt.
- VIDEO | Bicycle ramp for Parkbrug at Park Spoor Noord / ‘t Eilandje in Antwerp opened.
- VIDEO | Antwerp researching old castle at Noorderterras.
- VIDEO | Pedestrian bridge in Antwerp’s Stadspark restored.
- Antwerp’s Rubens House to have new visitor centre by 2024.
- ANTWERP | Rubens House to close on 9 January 2023 and reopen in 2027.
- Noorderterras to become Kaailine, Antwerp’s New York-inspired High Line.
- Antwerp’s City Theatre Stadsschouwburg to be demolished, new playhouse elsewhere.