How did the piecing together of different initiatives gradually give rise to the urban cultural foyer at Schouwburgplein? Article on Soundpiece in CITIES The Magazine issue #o2: “EMERGING CENTERS”.


In an article for the online magazine CITIES The Magazine issue #o2: “EMERGING CENTERS”, David Dooghe describes the progress of the project Soundpiece, from initiate idea to the current situation, and reflects on the lessons learned.


one of the first uses of Soundpiece, International Film Festival Rotterdam 2o1o


Soundpiece, a permanent open sources sound-installation in the public space, has from start been an experimental project. It is a project that has a clear goal: strengthen the Schouwburgplein as the urban cultural foyer of Rotterdam. To achieve this goal however no directions have been outlined. Over the years, an open and flexible approach towards new ideas made the installation on one hand more connected with the life that occurs on the square and on the other hand gave new meanings to the square. On top of this Soundpiece is a project that is strongly dependant on other participants for its success. Due to these 3 reasons, an open, experimental and participative bottom-up approach was necessary.

With its clear goal and an open, experimental and participative process, the projects bottom-up approach has been rewarding. The open, experimental approach has ensured that Soundpiece stays current. The participative approach connected Soundpiece with new cultural stakeholders. During the process Soundpiece gradually strengthens the Schouwburgplein as the urban cultural foyer of Rotterdam.


CITIES The Magazine issue #o2: “EMERGING CENTERS” examines how recently urban research and explorations have shifted attention to ‘bottom-up’ initiatives mitigating the impacts of ‘top-down’ approaches to urban development.