The duo Van Boxel and Koreman and their office ZUS are working on solicited and unsolicited design and research in the field of architecture, urbanism and landscape design. With a strong belief that an architect has to claim a strong position in the public debate on the future of our cities, van Boxel and Koreman see a large share of their pro-active work as urban politics.
The imaginary power of architecture can contribute to a necessary shift of boundaries between private and public, short and long term, temporary and permanent. It’s within these paradoxes that true progressive projects can emerge that on the one hand take a long-term responsibility and on the other hand offer a possibility for user- and civic engagement. The projects of ZUS are therefore never just architectural statements, but fundamentally routed within the city, civic society and within an extensive planning tradition.
A typical result of their proactive and recognized working method is the Test Site Rotterdam. As an ignition ZUS turned a vacant office block in the middle of Rotterdam into an urban laboratory, now known as the Schieblock penetrated by a 390 meter wooden pedestrian bridge, the Luchtsingel. Reconnecting separated parts of the fragmented city center of Rotterdam. It serves as a backbone for the development of a series of new public spaces. While the bridge is partly crowdfunded, it also received the Rotterdam City Initiative 2012 as investment for the development of the bridge.
Van Boxel and Koreman head an international and multi-disciplinary team consisting of architects, urban planners, landscape architects, with offices in Rotterdam and New York. ZUS is currently working on a metropolitan vision for Marseille (FR), a plan for the New Meadowlands in New Jersey (US), the design for a music venue in Rotterdam (NL) and are designing world’s largest sea lock in Amsterdam-IJmuiden (NL).
Their unsolicited advice saw them win the Maaskant Prize for Young Architects and the Berlin Intervention Award in 2015. They were selected as Architect of the Year 2012. Currently they are professors at Syracuse University School of Architecture in New York City, were they are leading the Gentrification Lab, and are working on their new book ‘City of Pemanent Temporality’ (2017, NAI010 Booksellers).