Final design for Antwerp Schelde quays New South

The part in question is located near the Nieuw Zuid district, between the already rebuilt southern part of the quay and the Generaal Armstrongweg. In the final design, Sweco-PROAP-WIT architects have elaborated the design in more detail with many types of green, different water elements for collecting rainwater, different sports and play zones, a water forest, three pavilions, two amphitheaters with stairs, different landscape elements and urban furniture.

Park with various features

This renovated part of the city will primarily be a park. The other functions (sports, games, picnics, small events …) are gathered as much as possible around three places, so that the largest part of the space can be made as green as possible. To limit heat stress and meet the need for cooling in the city, the design provides open water and high green areas.

The new park will be a place with many trees with a varying interpretation. Certain parts will be experienced as forest, while other areas may have a more open character. As a result, relations with the Schelde will also be constantly changing. Sometimes the path goes through the trees, sometimes on the edge of the flood defense with open views. The current digesti near Sint-Andries and south continues for another hundred meters into the new park, after which it switches to more informal and winding paths.

The northernmost part of the park gets a more natural and educational character with many trees, plants and shrubs with edible fruits. The central part provides space for the various park functions such as play, sports and picnics.

Then there is a zone that refers to an orchard with, among other things, orchards. In the southernmost part there will be water forest. Furthermore, the trees and plants on the wet side of the flood defense are selected to withstand regular flooding.

Meeting rooms

The final design provides a lot of meeting and seating areas in the park. The benches have different volumes, colors and shapes, depending on their exact location. There will also be two amphitheaters with stairs, one along the city side and one along the Schelde in the floodplain.

There are playgrounds in several places. They are designed with wooden beams in a circle. There is also a playground with climbing equipment and a water feature. In addition to playgrounds, there is also space for sports, including a large lawn that provides ball catchers in the form of a steel structure with climbing plants to screen the quay road. There will also be petanque courts and four fitness equipment overlooking the Schelde.

Water recovery

The use of water is an important design element. The rainwater that comes from, among other places, the Ring must be cleaned and recycled in the park. Visible water canals are being built in the southern part of the park. There will be pavilions in three places. The first will be built centrally in the park and will have a technical function for the heating network in the Nieuw Zuid district. A little further south comes a pavilion with a raised vantage point over the Schelde, a real residence. Finally, in the southernmost part, a pavilion will be attached to an aesthetically designed pond that functions as a water basin with an underground rain supply.

Here will also be a water forest with water-loving trees. It is the most adventurous part of the park with rugged rock formations and routes to discover. For the interpretation of the two available pavilions, a suitable park arrangement is sought, such as a small cafe, a restaurant, an exhibition or meeting room.

“Antwerp residents will see a new park emerge next spring. Along the Schelde quays at Nieuw Zuid, a 5.5-hectare park will be laid out, where the whole town and neighborhood can relax. Here will be orchard, dog aeration zone, playground, pavilions and two amphitheaters. In short, we are fully committed to ‘green’ here, but also ‘blue’ with a water element that collects the water from the Antwerp ring like a basin, “says councilor for urban development Annick De Ridder.

Hundreds of local residents have provided input to this final design in recent years. On Thursday, April 21, a new neighbor moment is planned, where the final design will be explained. If all goes well, the reconstruction of the New South quay area can start in the spring of 2023 and everything will be ready in 2024.

Scheldekajen’s comprehensive plan

To restore the connection between the city and the Schelde, the city of Antwerp is working on a large-scale reconstruction of the Schelde quays. The Schelde quays are a strip of almost 7 km from Droogdokken Island in the north to Blue Gate Antwerp in the south. They radically change their views. The seven different sub-areas are being rebuilt in accordance with Schelde Quay’s master plan, which has been prepared on behalf of the city of Antwerp, AG Vespa and De Vlaamse Waterweg nv.

The Vlaamse Waterweg nv is responsible for the stabilization of the quay wall and the construction of a raised flood defense. The city of Antwerp and AG Vespa are responsible for the rebuilding of the public domain. The work will be carried out in stages and will take 15 years to complete.

Belvédère in Droogdokkenparken and the rebuilt quay area near Sint-Andries and the South opened as early as 2019. Work is currently underway on the preparation, design and realization of the following subzones: the Loodswezen area, the central part between Steenplein and Noorderterras, the second phase of Sint-Andries and South and New South.

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