vision + method
ON THE SHOULDERS OF GIANTS: THE ART OF ENGINEERING
NL AS A WORK OF ART
The office views the Netherlands as a major work of art and the work of H+N+S Landscape Architects is therefore at the heart of tradition in which the landscape is the result of meaningful human intervention in its (natural) environment.
H+N+S sees its work as a service to the public good. The office has been designing and realizing plans that respond to social questions of today and tomorrow for almost 30 years. The office elaborates on the quality that is provided by culture and history, whereby it strives to come up with simple, convincing and effective solutions for complex issues.
NETWORK OF SPECIALISTS DELIVERS JOINT EXPERTISE
CULTURE OF COLLABORATION
Where possible, the office works closely with users and residents of city and landscape. Shaping and giving substance to the relationship between people and their environment is therefore an important source of inspiration for H+N+S. This translates into an attitude where employees are alert to what is happening in society and what drives and engages people.
Collaboration is also an important key concept for the teams working on the projects in the office. H+N+S is a monodisciplinary office where almost every designer is a landscape architect. Our employees are very active in their profession and aware of its development but also know the limits of their competences as landscape designers. H+N+S therefore often collaborates with experts from other professional disciplines such as architecture, cultural history, urban planning, ecology and civil engineering. Over the years, the office has built up a broad joint expertise with this network of specialists.
THE DESIGN IN THE PROCESS: A SEARCH FOR TRANSCENDING CONCEPTS
Behind current issues, such as coastal safety, Room for the River and energy transition, a complex reality is concealed, in which divergent (technical) disciplines make an important contribution to the complex tasks that result from it. Moreover, such issues often involve various interests that in some cases are directly opposed to each other. H+N+S Landscape Architects uses an integral approach aimed at connecting, in every project.
H+N+S uses the binding power of design for these types of projects, whereby the office tries to draw the input from the various disciplines together. The designers then try to explore whether and how a transcending concept can be developed, in consultation with the interest groups that are involved. In recent years, there has been a growing need for such a substantive and process-oriented integration into projects.
FIRST THINGS FIRST: FIRST CONDITIONS, THEN DESIGN AND INTEGRATION OF THE PROGRAM
LANDSCAPE AS A SYSTEM
In addition, H+N+S approaches the landscape as a system of layers that interact. The office takes landscape-forming forces and processes, such as soil formation, hydrology, natural dynamics, infrastructural development and occupation, as the starting point for its plans. In the same way that the soil, the water management and the state of the art were decisive at the time of the design concept of the Beemster polder, for the concept of the H+N+S project garden of the Van Abbemuseum, the hydrology and the ecological possibilities of the river Dommel were normative.
As in many places in (the low-lying) Netherlands, the quality of the design stems from the logic of the layers of the landscape and the way in which humans respond to it. In this process H+N+S is constantly looking for multi-layered solutions, for smart linking opportunities that make for a more feasible or more valuable plan. The quest to realize added value in every plan is therefore the trademark of H+N+S Landscape Architects.
KEEPING TRACK OF CURRENT AFFAIRS- THEMES ON THE HORIZON
Landscape architecture is constantly evolving, and one of the major tasks for this field stems from the major transition challenges towards a society based on a sustainable water, energy and production system. The existing landscape will change dramatically as a result of the generation, storage and transport of renewable energy.
In addition to shaping this energy transition, themes such as water and food production represent permanent tasks in both qualitative and quantitative terms. These are challenging tasks that the landscape architects of H+N+S look forward to in the coming phase of research into the landscape of the future.
At H+N+S we work continuously and in mutual coherence on the following tasks / themes: