A bench with 33 seats, for each seating spot that the district has taken away five years ago because of inconvenience, can now be found on Gouwplein. Bart Steenweg's bench stands central to a new arrangement of pavement and earthworks, illuminated by the Living Lights by Ivo van de Baar. After the summer new playground equipment for small children will be placed and the existing pergola will be extended by students of the LMC-pro Huismanstraat.
The celebration marks the completion of a four-year process of stepwise planning and implementation. This was supported by a group of active residents from the neighbourhood under the coordination of Field Academy. Due to the transformation that the square has undergone it is hard to imagine what it looked like four years ago and how it was used then, that refrigerators and furniture was dumped there and that homeless people lived on the spot where children play nowadays.
Residents, but also employees of municipal services and daily directors Ed Goverde and Alaattin Erdal all sat down personally to see if actually 33 man fit on the bench. It fits, and in a way that it certainly brings people together. Finally, that is what it was all about: Gouwplein as a familiar meeting place in the district.