Codarts Rotterdam, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and the Municipality of Rotterdam recently signed a covenant paving the way for the arrival of the Culture Campus in Zuid. The Culture Campus will be instrumental in bringing more higher education, culture and tourism to Zuid. All the parties involved will work on the details of the agreements in the coming time so they’ll be ready to start the first education activities at the Charloisse Hoofd location in 2022.
Rutger Engels, Erasmus University Rotterdam’s Rector Magnificus, is enthusiastic about the developments: “The Culture Campus in Zuid will be a place where students can continue their development in a melting pot of education and research at the cusp of science and the arts. At the same time, academic and higher education should be accessible in principle for everyone in Rotterdam, and the Culture Campus will enable us to make more of a connection with talented young people in Rotterdam. Our young people are the ones who will be crucial in the development and future of this great city.”
More diversity in student intake
The Culture Campus offers a high-profile location for higher education. The educational institutions taking part are looking forward to contributing to research into the societal issues facing Zuid by using different research and education disciplines, and by working together with innovative thinkers and creators. Due to its location in Zuid, classes at the Culture Campus can expect to see more diversity among its student population.
Said Kasmi, Vice-Mayor for Education, Culture and Tourism: “Everyone has a right to a good education, and as Vice-Mayor, it’s my job to make that possible. I applaud the fact that higher education is coming to Zuid, as it will inspire and motivate young people living in this part of the city to make full use of their talents. What could be better than being able to study at a university or university of applied sciences in your own neighbourhood? What’s more, over time the Culture Campus will become something of an icon that will no doubt attract a lot of tourists. This creates opportunities and employment for the residents of Zuid.”
A great place to thrive
The Charloisse Hoofd, a lovely spot along the Maashaven, has been selected as the initial location for establishing the Culture Campus. All four parties are exploring how the first education activities will commence here in 2022. But they’re also simultaneously working on an ambitious plan to find a definitive location for the Culture Campus, somewhere that’s good for Zuid, a location with an iconic vibe and an international flair. The growth model for Charloisse Hoofd is part of a wider development project covering the Maashaven Zuidzijde and Park Maashaven.
Wilma Franchimon, President of the Codarts Rotterdam Executive Board: “It’s been a privilege to have been involved in the development of the Culture Campus over the past three years. I believe that the arts and fine arts programmes should be visible throughout the city, and that includes Zuid. We have an opportunity before us to take the amazing next step of exploring how we’ll establish our partnership in Zuid with Erasmus University Rotterdam and Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences, and forge new connections with that part of the city.”
Benefits for Zuid
Rotterdam Zuid will benefit greatly from the Culture Campus, in part thanks to the 2018 Regional Deal (Regio Deal) made with the central government. The Culture Campus will be an inviting, inclusive location bringing together neighbourhood residents, visitors, students, lecturers, cultural artists, creative entrepreneurs, businesses and researchers. It will be a place to learn, study, do business, conduct research, connect, meet, create, innovate, and showcase expositions and presentations. All of these things will contribute to the development of Rotterdam and the district Zuid in particular, one of the goals of the National Programme for Rotterdam Zuid (NPRZ).
Richard Moti, Vice-Mayor for Work, Income and the National Programme for Rotterdam Zuid: “I’m very pleased with the developments related to the Culture Campus. With the NPRZ programme, we’re making a substantial investment in primary and secondary education in Zuid so we can offer children a better future. Higher education coming to Zuid will be an excellent addition to what we’ve already set in motion.”
The plan for the Culture Campus first emerged in the education and culture sector. A threesome consisting of Franchimon, Pastors and Kemperman advised the municipality in September 2019 on the development of the Culture Campus. This external consultancy came on the heels of the ‘Rotterdam Connected’ manifesto in which educational and cultural organisations called on the municipality to take the ambitious next step of exploring the possibilities after the motion passed in the Lower House in 2016. In this motion, Members of Parliament Monasch and Hoogland had issued a call to look into the viability of an ambitious, progressive institute that would contribute to the appeal of Rotterdam Zuid.
Zakia Guernina, member of the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences Executive Board: “As far as we’re concerned, there’s no better place than Zuid for urban and social renewal. We believe that as a university of applied sciences, it’s important that we contribute to this. Working together with the Municipality of Rotterdam, Codarts and Erasmus University, we’re going to look at ways of strengthening our partnership and connection with Rotterdam Zuid."