Replacing fields of cows with fields of homes, Langerak is the second phase of the urban plan expanding the city of Utrecht with over 30,000 new dwellings.

Two Fields

The new urban sprawl stretches for miles over what was formerly farmland and each field was given a set of urban rules to push it to be distinctive from its neighbours. Our two fields had a common set of rules, with a requirement for a shared green space at the centre of each field. This green space was to form part of a sustainable drainage system.

Agrarian Nostalgia

The homes were arranged in four to six terraces and a small yard is accessed from a perimeter road and connected to the central green space. They drop to a single storey entrance elevation with large roof overhang facing the shared yard. The traditional tuile du nord tiled roofs were inspired by Dutch farm buildings and Amsterdam’s low-density suburbs.
Defining the other side of the yard is a single storey shelter for cars and stores for bikes.

The project takes up and uses an agrarian nostalgia. The ‘half- mansard’ roof is both familiar, in some way vernacular, and at the same time infinitely strange. At one level it plays to a subliminal coupling between the suburb and the farm that has always been the mainstay of the suburban myth.

Client: Bouwfonds Fortis Vastgoedontwikkeling Leidsche Rijn
Size: 140 dwellings
Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands
Photography: Ann Bousema and David Grandorge

Venice Pavillon 2008