Ede Market Square | Ede, Netherlands | HOSPER

The wishes of residents formed the basis for the new design of the Market Square. The municipality of Ede and the DOE Foundation gathered ideas from the residents of Ede for the redevelopment of the Markt Square. Subsequently, a competition was written to translate these ideas into a design. This competition consisted of three rounds, in which the votes of the people of Ede were decisive. In this way, the population of Ede was given the opportunity to choose its own square. HOSPER translated these wishes, in combination with specific preconditions due to the underlying parking garage and the market, into a design based on a contemporary interpretation of the historic leafy ‘overtuin’ gardens.

Strengthening the identity of Ede

The centre used to have a green and village like character. Large trees and hedges were everywhere. This historic green character has been the inspiration for the renewal of the Market Square. New, modern Overtuinen – detached gardens across the road – with hedges and trees were introduced. With their leafy character and their recreational function these gardens refer to the Overtuinen of the former hotel ‘Hof van Gelderland’.

The large open space of the Market Square is delineated with the planting of the natural gardens and small-scale spaces are created. There is space for various functions and activities, such as the market, small-scale events, terraces and games, both on the square and in the Overtuinen. In addition, many of the functions and activities mentioned by the Edese population are now possible. Over time, the interpretation of the Overtuinen can change and adapt to the wishes of the population of Ede.

Anchored in centre and surroundings

With the Overtuinen a sequence of green spaces is created: from the Veluwe via the city park and the old church square to the Market Square. The green Overtuinen are complementary to the built area on the south and east sides. The many passageways between the Overtuinen provide inviting connections between the Market Square and the adjacent streets. The Market Square is a green village square: a cozy place for meeting and activity.

The ‘Overtuinen’

The Overtuinen are slightly raised and surrounded by hedges. They feel like a place of their own. There is a good view of the square and the trees get sufficient space for their roots. The trees are exactly on the columns of the parking garage so that the existing construction is able to support them. The Overtuinen open up to the centre of the square with hedges, plant borders and long sitting edges. From these sitting edges there is a beautiful view of the other Overtuinen, the square and the church.

Planting and material

Large trees provide a pleasant spatial effect and introduce a human size to make the space feel comfortable. The planting reduces the wind, thus creating sheltered and sunny places to stay. In addition it also reduces heat stress and creates a new habitat for birds and insects. Small water fountains are laid out in the centre of the square. They  are used a lot by children and thus provide extra vitality.

The existing kiosks and a new kiosk, are included in the design of the Overtuinen. They have sheltered terraces that are positioned perfectly towards the sun. The façade lighting of the existing buildings on the Marktplein has been maintained. The light of the large light poles has been toned down to shine less brightly and the new trees are attractively illuminated. Atmospheric lights in the square floor near the water fountains provide intimacy in the evening.

Location | Ede centre, The Netherlands

Design Firm | HOSPER
Designers | Hilke Floris, Ronald Bron, Marike Oudijk, Jan Houweling

Partners | SmitsRinsma
Client | Municipality of Ede

Photography | POC / municipality of Ede / HOSPER

About Damian Holmes 3313 Articles
Damian Holmes is the Founder and Editor of World Landscape Architecture (WLA). He is a registered landscape architect (AILA) working in international design practice in Australia. Damian founded WLA in 2007 to provide a website for landscape architects written by landscape architects. Connect on Linkedin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/damianholmes/