May: Amstelveen “Community Meeting Places” Jane Jacobs Walk
In May of 2014, Fred Sanders of YourpaceBV hosted his second Jane Jacobs Walk in Amstelveen, discussing community meeting places. Fred has kindly shared with us some of the observations and insights that came from this Walk:
Walking and talking over Meeting Places, Jane Jacobs Walk 14th of May at Amstelveen in The Netherlands
"A group of ten civilians of the neighborhood Elsrijk started walking from the community center ‘t Open Hof at noon. The sun was already warm this spring and the participants were in a good walking mood. A woman disabled sitting in an electric wheelchair joined the group after some minutes. Great that also her voice could be heard. The talk of the day was: what kind of meeting places does the people in this neighborhood need? In the past the municipality arranged community places like the center we started at for this Jane Jacobs Walk. Now, because of lack of money, new opportunities are looked for. It’s surprising how many places there are and how many meetings there are organized, just by the organization of civilians active in this neighborhood. Also, there is an initiative to reconstruct an ‘open air theatre’ in the neighborhood. This place could be the central meeting place for the future, if money for a small building could be raised. The idea is to start a flower garden on the place to get the civilians of the surrounding area earlier involved. Also, a theatre for children was visited, a church in an area with small shops of all kinds. All these places could be better organized meeting places, cheaper than physical community centers paid by government, more in between and from people. This Jane Jacobs Walk delivered the people and professionals a bouquet of ideas to work with in the coming months."
- Fred Sanders, host