A Chat With Luc Harings (Ilovenoord)

In advance of Blogging the City, we’re publishing a bunch of short interviews with some of the speakers to get you in the mood. Last one: Luc Harings. On his blog ilovenoord he collects things and places that make you happy in the upcoming district Amsterdam Noord (North Amsterdam). In two years the online and offline community grew into the biggest bottom-up initiative of Amsterdam. The blog’s heart-shaped logo is seen everywhere in the North. Tomorrow, Luc will talk about the role of new media in making a shift from ‘top-down’ thinking to ‘bottom-up’ thinking when it comes to city-making.

1. What puts your city on the map?
“My part of the city (Amsterdam Noord) has been from a historical perspective always ‘separated’, from Amsterdam due to the natural border of the river IJ on one side and the nature from Waterland on the other. NDSM, Tolhuistuin, EYE and Noorderpark are my favorite hotspots in the North.

2. A topic that really needs to be more discussed in the European urban world is “…”, because “…”?
“Giving instead of taking. Sharing instead of keeping. Caring instead of neglection.”

3. As a blogger, how does Amsterdam inspire you?
“The North side is always changing. Change is good. Change is inspiring.”

4. Some people paint the town red. What would you paint?
“Nothing. I love to use stickers more than painting things…”

5. When you have to choose, what would be your choice: Pontje (the infamous ferry) or the Noord/Zuidlijn (Amsterdam’s metro line under construction)?
“Pontje no doubt! The wind in your hair, all the troubles fade away in the IJ. It’s magic!”