’t Karregat: Design of a ‘social clockwork’.How Frank van Klingeren gave shape to his ideal society and how this dream was brought to a standstill by reality
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Studio: Msc 2 History Thesis (TU Delft) Docenten: Charlotte van Wijk Abstract: ’t Karregat, a unique building in the Netherlands designed by Frank van Klingeren, caused a lot of national and international commotion. The multifunctional centre opened in 1973 and housed shops, schools, a community centre and a medical centre which were all intended to be completely open to stimulate integration of functions, unexpected encounter and participation. Parents would pass by their child in school while doing groceries and patients waiting for a doctor’s appointment would take place in the café. Architect Van Klingeren designed as little as possible, mainly a roof under which life would develop itself. The experimental design represented an ideal society in which people would be connected again, and could shape their own living environment.
Unfortunately in practice this turned out to be hard to realise. The openness caused nuisance and good ideas got stuck on the rigid bureaucracy of modern society. When the years went by the building deteriorated and seemed destined to enter oblivion.