Green Lungs

From 1934, the goal of Amsterdam’s General Expansion Plan (Algemeen Uitbreidings Plan or AUP) was not only to expand urban development but also to create a balance between city and green space. Alongside the roomier and greener designs for new residential areas, the “wedge- and lobe-structure” was important in achieving this.

Reaching a green area within ten minutes
The AUP sought to expand the city not through the addition of an extra city-ring but rather through implementation of a lobe-structure.

The new expansions are like fingers that stretch into the surrounding land, which in turn reaches deep into the urban environment through green wedges (scheggen). This structure allows city residents to reach a green area within ten minutes, even from the heart of the city centre, which is unique in the world.

Green Lungs
Named in a counter-clockwise order, the green wedges are: Spaarnwoudescheg, Sloterscheg, Amsterdamse Bosscheg, Amstelscheg, Diemerscheg, Waterlandscheg, Twiskescheg and Zaanse scheg.

The structure vision 2040, established in 2011, presented this wedge structure as an important element. It allows the balance between urban development and the surrounding green to remain intact, even in an ever expanding city. It is of vital importance for the quality of life within to city that we cherish the green lungs in and around the city and that we keep using them for recreational purposes.

Kaart van het Algemeen UItbreidingsplan van Amsterdam (AUP), Dienst der Publieke Werken, 1935. Vogelvlucht AUP Buitenveldert gezien naar het Zuidwesten. Op de voorgrond een deel van Plan Zuid van Berlage. Er achter de toekomstige Tuinstad Buitenveldert. Links de Amstel; 1935. Kaart: Dienst der Publieke Werken.