Soundtrackcity helps cities to integrate sound into planning and design in a positive way
As some of you know Michiel is advising the municipalities of Rotterdam and Antwerpen how these cities can integrate sound into planning and design of public places in a positive way. For Rotterdam he collaborates with Marcel Cobussen, professor of auditory cultures at Leiden University. The first project of 7 in Rotterdam they advised upon in 2020 how to Integrate sound into planning was HOFPLEIN, a famous square in the city centre with a huge fountain in the middle. At the moment the fountain is not reachable by foot and hardly hearable because of a 4 lane traffic circuit surrounding it. The city of Rotterdam plans to change this and transform the square into a park. Read the longread in Noema where Michiel tells what it’s all about!
Soundtrackcity also conducted guided listening walks. During one at Hofplein, participants included people who live close to the square, entrepreneurs, maintenance workers and a bicycle courier who regularly cycles through. The youngest contributor was 12, and the oldest 82. Huijsman asked them what sounds they could hear. Answers were specific, precise: “A continuous thump”; “bells ringing unpleasantly, without direction”; “the clock tower at City Hall and a bird in the distance”; “footsteps”; “the noise of clothing, when the traffic stops.”