After the acquisition of the (former) Van Gend en Loos site by the Municipality of Tilburg, a steering group was established in July 2014. Its members worked out the requirements, a combination of green and leisure, described in the Coalition Agreement 2014-2018 under the term ‘citizen participation’.
On 14 July 2015, the Municipal Executive approved the April 2015 Plan of Action the group prepared. It was an extensive plan of requirements with preconditions, weighting criteria and testing frameworks, varying from clean and safe to a green place where people can work, play sports, relax, play and meet. Management and park management were also mentioned.
Between January and April 2016, 82 very special citizen initiative ideas were submitted. Based on existing – successful – city parks, the steering group selected potential success factors and criteria, after which all plan submitters were given the opportunity to explain their idea in person in a short pitch.
The criteria were:
ecology and green structure;
facilities for recreation and sport;
realisation of general facilities;
bringing back running water;
attention to points such as: What will it contribute to the city? How will local residents be involved, and in what form?
Development & Realisation
The steering group developed a well-founded vision on the closure of the park, the maintenance (intact, clean and safe) of the park and the energy supply, the starting point being an energy-neutral function whereby (solar) energy is generated. Objective aspects, such as the enthusiasm of the idea providers, the goodwill factor, the willingness to cooperate/share knowledge, and proven expertise, played a role in the final selection.
From the 84 ideas submitted, eight innovators were chosen and these are the park partners of today.