Charlois

The town Rotterdam started from a series of expansion plans, with Charlois as the sample card of the Dutch urban planning. Charlois is the southwestern municipality of Rotterdam.In the north Rotterdam is bordered by the Maas, in the west it is bordered by the dike along the Waalhaven and in the south Rotterdam is bordered by the A15m the southern ring road and the Betuwelijn.

Charlois has about 66.000 inhabitants and consists of seven major residential areas: the pre-war neighborhoods Oud-Charlois, Carnisse, Tarwewijk, Heijplaat and the postwar garden villages Pendrecht and Zuidwijk, as well as the emergency village the Wielewaal. Between the districts are peculiar places, historical references, urban residual spaces and the Zuiderpark.

The Zuiderpark is the largest city park in Rotterdam and is a venue for sports, allotments and outdoor festivals. There is a great contrast in human activity in the north-south and east-west direction within Charlois. The highest concentration of schools, port activity and commuting in the north-south direction, creates enormous crowds daily. During the evenings and in the weekends it is very silent there; there are a lot of empty spaces and it is a great challenge to keep going the economic activity in the community. Many small shops are constantly changing location and owner and therefore the sense of 'belonging' and community engagement disappears.

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