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Higgs Young completes Europan scheme after 11 years

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London-based practice Higgs Young Architects has finally completed a housing project in the Netherlands, over a decade after winning the scheme as part of a Europan competition.

The scheme ( pictured) - designed for the 1995 Europan 3 - is for a series of three residential developments in the Dutch city of Haarlem.

Progress was delayed due to the site and reaching agreement with existing owners including a local mosque and artists' studios.

The completed Higgs Young project includes 89 new homes, comprising 38 three-story terraced units, 8 four-storey canal houses with ground-floor studios and 43 riverside apartments.

The jurors selected the scheme by Higgs Young Architects because it created good connections to the neighbourhood, a clear central green space and integrated carefully with the adjoining buildings.

Europan is an ideas competition which is organised for architects under 40 years of age and takes place every two-and-a-half years in about 20 European countries.

The initiative, aimed at architects, has historically been beset with problems because so few schemes ever make it off the drawing board. Holland is the only country to have truly bucked this trend.

by Ed Dorrell

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