Social networks Hart van Zuid

Hart van Zuid wishes to be the centre of Zuid that does justice to the chances and opportunities of the area: A complete centre area that invites people to visit and stay there. Now, many people find the area around Ahoy, Zuidplein and the Motorstraat area uncomfortable and it has little appeal.  Hart Sociaal wants to reveal and strengthen the social component and potential of the area in cooperation with all parties that are important for this case.


Commissioned by Stadsontwikkeling, Field Academy did research on the use and appreciation by residents from surrounding neighbourhoods  of the public space around Zuidplein shopping centre in September 2011 (Article: Towards a beating Heart). This research was done under the contract for the revitalization of Hart van Zuid.

One of the goals of the area development Hart van Zuid is to improve the appearance of the place with its surrounding buildings and outdoor spaces. This should be attractive and appealing. In future, the area should invite to stay longer and must provide opportunities for informal meetings and active participation. Therefore this requires a coherent and attractive urban fabric that connects programmes, areas and mainly people. A social programme is a vital part of the revitalization of Hart van Zuid.

Several parties around Hart van Zuid are already successfully working together, yet there are still many untapped opportunities in the area. A first step towards implementation of the programme is to explore and identify potential partners in the region.  Many parties are already known from previous collaboration, yet a good overview of objectives, programmes, commitment and strength of different organizations lacks.

Field Academy has been asked to map the potency of active network partners and to examine whether there are links that can be established with parties in the area that are currently not in the picture.

On June 19th Liese Vonk, programme manager at the municipality of Rotterdam, organized a workshop, as a kick off for this project. During these workshops several parties, which are involved in Hart van Zuid, get to know each other using ‘speed-dating’ to discover where cooperation is possible. This workshop has led to three specific activities for the programme Hart van Zuid. Field Academy will interview these parties to map out the network.

The results of this study will be known by mid-October.