This is a big statement.
It is time for city dwellers to occupy another layer of urban landscape; not the ground, not underground, but the roof.
The idea of elevated occupancy in urban space has been around for a while especially in top tier city in order to circulate people more efficiently from point A to point B, between building to building.
And as we are elevated, meandering through pylons, inside and out, we are experiencing the city in a rather different perspective that we never experience before if we were staying on the same flat ground. Creating a platform to sit and stay is the ultimate expression of celebrating the moment to look back into the city.
And why don't we integrate the platform to a building so we can afford to have bigger space to accommodate more people on. The result is a hybrid marriage of building-landscape.
The stairs lead you to access the rooftop of Kriterion, one of Rotterdam's most special building which is just right by the central station. The whole rooftop is suddenly transformed into publicly accessible space which gives people a new kind of perspective to look at Rotterdam.
Along the rooftop is animated with bar and cafe, and description of building around the city, encouraging people to walk around to experience different side of view towards the city. A new kind of public experience which is only experienced through elevated platform at certain height.
The new ground
The public presence now disrupt what used to be the most desolated area of the Kriterion building, the rooftop to become the contrary. The rooftop now become one of the most important program element of the building in relation to the city as the stairs opens up so many opportunities.
Towards City 2.0
We, as human, curiosity always drives us to keep looking on places that no one ever been. The roof is a new undiscovered public realm for most cities. Every building has its roof and most of it is designed as private area or back of the house where machineries and cooling towers located, or just left empty desolated region of the building.
The stairs from MVRDV propagate the idea of reclaiming building roofs as public element of the city. By having this one prototype in front of Rotterdam Centraal Station, the stairs extends the plaza 3 dimensionally to the rooftop emulating almost the similar effect of Oslo Opera House.
The rooftop is now become a new territory for the habitation of the city dwellers. And there is a lot more new ground yet to be discovered!
The Stairs is a pilot project, it can be propagated throughout.
the city just have the opportunity to reclaim every inch of its built area back as a place for every city dwellers!