How Mobile Kiosks And Craft Beers Can Drive Urban Transformation

Together with The Hague architecture institute Stroom we’re organizing the Stadsklas, a spring school that teaches curious individuals interested in cities and design the ins and outs of DIY urbanism. The series will span six days of learning in May, with each day set in a different location. Trend-setting city-makers will take the participants on a trip to their world, and demonstrate new ways to look, act, and make.

On 26th May, artist and urban curator Sabrina Lindemann will be leading a Stadsklas session in Binckhorst in The Hague, a former industrial site that’s undergoing a process of transformation. Lindemann’s project agency OpTrek aims to play a substantial role in the urban revitalization process by opening up the area through a number of varied and creative interventions, varying from a kiosk strategy to the launch of a local Binckhorst beer brand.

The Hague's Binckhorst area is undergoing a process of organic urban transformation

The Hague’s Binckhorst area is undergoing a process of organic urban transformation

The Hybrid Kiosk project

The Hybrid Kiosk project

Binckhorst still accommodates plenty of labor-intensive companies, such as car breakers’ yards and a paper mill. Lindemann uses this existing layer of commercial activity as a basis to organically transform the area into a more mixed-use district. Initially designed as an industrial site, Binckhorst lacks a strong sense of public space. The Hybrid Kiosk strategy focuses on the idea of developing a pleasant public space through the installation of a number of mobile kiosks. The kiosks are an experiment conducted by artists who meet passers-by, local business people and entrepreneurs to find out what services and goods the kiosks should offer in the future in order to serve passers-by.

Binckse Belofte Binckse Belofte
Binckse Belofte: a craft beer brewed in Binckhorst

Binckse Belofte: a craft beer brewed in Binckhorst

Could establishing a local beer brand revitalize an urban area? Another, more recent project carried out by OpTrek is Binckse Belofte, a craft beer that’s exclusively brewed in Binckhorst. The aim of Binckse Belofte is to present Binckhorst’s creative, artisanal, and intractable history in a whole new way that also appeals to outsiders. The beer’s look-and-taste reflect the area’s deeply rooted worker’s culture — the labels on the bottles, for instance, are made of sandpaper. 1,000 liters of Binckse Belofte have already been consumed, and last month the brewers of Kompaan brough a new load of beer onto the local market.

On May 26th, Sabrina Lindemann will take the Stadsklas participants on a tour of Binckhorst. She will show them the world behind the façades of the industrial buildings, and teach how tactical interventions of all kinds can make an organic, area-wide transformation strategy.

Join this Stadsklas session!
Registration is capped at 12 to 15 people. The costs are €100 including food and drinks, and transport on location. Click here for more information on how to participate!