Rooftop inspiration

Despite the fact that the Rotterdam Rooftop Days will not take place in 2020 because of COVID-19, we are still full of rooftop-energy and ideas. But not only us. Especially now, rooftops and balconies play an important role in the daily lives of citizens. A welcoming place for fresh air and contact with your surroundings. Everywhere around us, the most creative rooftop-activities emerge, and we would love to share them with you here. Maybe you’ll find some new inspiration for your own rooftop!

Foto: (c) Frank Hanswijk


Rooftop dreams become reality

For several years now, architects gradually discover rooftops as the new public space. Danish architect Bjarke Ingles (BIG) for example, dreamed about using the rooftop of his parents’ house. Back in the day, it was not allowed, but now the buildings from his dreams have become reality.

From Luchtbpark De Hofbogen in Rotterdam till the Copenhill in Denmark, newspaper De Volkskrant highlighted six beautiful buildings of which the rooftop serves as a public space. Which rooftop do you wanna climb in the future?

Read the article here (in Dutch)

Photo: Copenhill, BIG architecten (c) Rasmus Hjortshoj


Discovering new space during social distancing

Photographer Jeremy Cohen captured his neighbours in Brooklyn (NYC) and their activities on surrounding rooftops. A new rooftop culture arises! Watch his video below or follow his rooftop reports at his Instagram.


Video: Rooftop culture during quarantine in New York, Jeremy Cohen (c) Revista Político


Less building, more people

Creating value in cities by reusing and (partially) demolishing excisting buildings. Architects office MVRDV showed that it works in their Asian projects Tainan Spring and Seoul Skygarden. A former shopping mall and highway overpass were transformed in attracting public space. In the Netherlands, TomDavid Architects developed the plan ‘Less Building – More People’ in which they demolish part of the rooftop to create an attractive green outdoor space for the public. Elsbeth Grievink wrote this inspiring article for newspaper Het Financieel Dagblad.

Read the article here (in Dutch)

Photo: Tainan Spring, MVRDV (c) Daria Scagliola


The rooftops as a stage for musicians in Teheran

Now that concert halls and stages are also closed in Iran, musicians move up to the rooftops of Teheran to perform their music at this public ‘stage’. This offers surrounding neighbors hope and entertainment in times of isolation. “These days I can feel the power of art more than ever.”, accordeonist Kaveh Ghrafari tells. AP Photos captures these images in a beautiful image collection.

View the images here

Photo: Mojgan Hosseini plays the qanun at a rooftop in Teheran (c) AP Photos


Rooftop life in Rome during lockdown

From cities all over the world, beautiful images appear of new ways to use rooftops during the COVID-crisis. In Rome, citizens are forced to move to the rooftops en masse. The usually crowded streets are empty. This leads to new, surprising views from the appartments. Photographer Max Intrisano, takes a picture of his newly discovered neighbors every day. Newspaper De Volkskrant published an article about him. Read it here (in Dutch).

Or, view the photos photographer Davide Fracassi made of the rooftop-life in Rome  here.

Photo: day 48 (c) Max Intrisano