The book Linkeroever. Across the River tells the story of Linkeroever, the Left Bank of Antwerp, and shows the results of an idea competition that started the debate on the importance of this part of the city for the whole of Antwerp.
For many of the city’s inhabitants, the Antwerp Linkeroever is unknown territory. From the banks of the Scheldt, the opposite side of the river appears as a series of high-rise buildings hovering over a green strip. Although recollections of summer evenings on the beach of Sint-Anna are part of the collective memory of the city, the Linkeroever is often overlooked and forgotten. It is ‘across the river’ – a part of the city, yet also something separate.
In 2016, Antwerp City Architect Christian Rapp launched an international ideas competition, with an explicit ambition to address the Linkeroever as an object of design research and to start the debate on the importance of this part of the city for the whole of Antwerp. The competition looked for Leitbilder – images that offer a vision on what the future of the city might be.
Linkeroever. Across the River intends to extend beyond merely collecting the results of the competition. Instead, it takes this initiative as the starting point for readdressing larger questions about the state of urban development and design today. If the Linkeroever is a city about to happen, this book and the competition wish to mark the start of this journey.