Bouwlust-Vrederust, Morgenstond and Moerwijk: with these characteristic names from the construction period after the Second World War, the enormous district of The Hague South-West was realized.
Famous architects such as Berlage and Dudok drew parts of the neighbourhood from a strong vision of the well-being of the inhabitants and the relationship with the city of The Hague. The idea of spatial quality was translated into a sleek grid pattern of wide avenues with lots of greenery. Now it has to contend with old age, demand for care, poverty and loneliness. The municipality wants to turn the tide and make South-West a vital and attractive district again. Students from Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Universities will help with this by means of thesis workshops.
Regional deal to transform The Hague Southwest
The Hague Southwest is in the spotlight again because of the Regional Deals of the national government. In addition to a solid housing construction assignment, a number of additional ambitions have been added. The municipality wants to transform The Hague Southwest from a vulnerable area into an attractive, vital, resilient, and sustainable residential area in The Hague, with more employment opportunities, accessible and wide range of education, strengthening the level of facilities, better accessibility, and a diverse range of housing.
Thesis workshop of the cooperating universities
With such a wide range of large urban issues, The Hague Southwest is an interesting case for students and researchers from South Holland universities. This spring, the collaborating universities will set up a thesis workshop together with the Municipality of The Hague from the Center Governance of Migration and Diversity. That is the first step for Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Universities to contribute to the development of The Hague Southwest.
The municipality wants to transform The Hague Southwest from a vulnerable area into a resilient and sustainable residential area, and students and researchers from the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Universities will be working on this.'
he thesis workshop consists of two thematic clusters in which groups of students from different fields of study carry out fieldwork and work on research questions. In this, they also seek collaboration with other educational institutions, municipal policy officers, and social parties in the neighborhood.
Current societal issues
Prof. Peter Scholten, professor at Erasmus University Rotterdam and scientific director of the LDE Center Governance of Migration and Diversity: 'As collaborating universities, we want to make a scientifically based contribution to current social issues. The developments around the Regional Deal The Hague Southwest fit very well in the research and education program of Leiden-Delft-Erasmus. Additionally, It is knowledge that may also be relevant for other cities in the future.'
As collaborating universities, we want to make a scientifically based contribution to current social issues'
Prof. Olaf van Vliet, professor of Social Security and Labor Market Policy at Leiden University and head of the Economy Department: 'This collaboration with the Municipality of The Hague offers wonderful opportunities. From our field it is interesting, for example, to develop knowledge about matters such as work, income, social security, and migration. In addition, we believe it is important to contribute to the socio-economic development of the city through our education to young people in The Hague.'
Municipality of The Hague: 'collaboration based on the best knowledge'
The Hague councilman Martijn Balster (Living, Neighborhoods & Welfare): 'A powerful, long-term, integrated program is needed to tackle the complex problems in Southwest. Collaboration with partners is essential here: as a municipality, we cannot do it alone. The Leiden-Delft-Erasmus thesis workshop is a good example of how, together - and on the basis of the best knowledge - we can make Southwest an even nicer place to live and visit.'
In the interview below by Omroep West, councilman Balster explains what the vision of the Municipality of The Hague is for Southwest.