Opening of the Rotterdam rooftop promenade | Wallpaper*

Top view: Rotterdam Rooftop Walk rises 30 meters above the city

The temporary installation, a collaboration with MVRDV architects, offers visitors a new perspective of Rotterdam

The Rotterdam Rooftop Walk, a 600m long orange carpet standing 30m high, was opened to visitors. The temporary installation, designed by Rotterdam Rooftop Days and architecture studio MVRDV, encompasses a bridge crossing one of Rotterdam’s key streets, the Coolsingel.

Offering the opportunity for a fresh look at the city, the rooftop walk encourages visitors to reflect on issues such as the housing crisis, renewable energy possibilities and the challenges posed by climate change. The elevated perspective allows observation of Rotterdam’s 18.5 m² flat roofs, opening up possibilities for their potential.

“In 2006, for the celebration of 75 years of the reconstruction of Rotterdam, we designed the Stairs to Kriterion, which attracted nearly 370,000 visitors,” explains Winy Maas, founding partner of MVRDV. “It was then that the idea came up that it would be good to do a sequel to the project. During the Eurovision Song Contest [in 2021], the idea was to make a high stage to honor the winner, but that was canceled due to the pandemic. I am happy that the Rotterdam Rooftop Days succeeded in achieving this goal, and I want to advocate for a further continuation: we should not only occupy our roofs and make them greener, but also connect them so that we can offer Rotterdammers a new rooftop park. For this, the orange mat and the Coolsingel bridging are a nice first test.’

The new space above the city has attracted designers, architects and artists, who show how rooftops can be used for water storage, energy and food production, and greenery. They created everything from a virtual village to an eco-friendly design for the roof of De Bijenkorf department store, demonstrating the potential use of space. The creatives set up a hub halfway along the elevated route, which navigates the World Trade Center building as well as De Bijenkorf’s. §

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