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Modelling Urban Experiences - Zuidas, Amsterdam

Christian Jantzen , Mikael Vetner

How can urban designers develop an emotionally satisfying environment not only for today’s users but also for coming generations? Which devices can they use to elicit interesting and relevant urban experiences? This paper attempts to answer these questions by analyzing the design of Zuidas, a new city centre emerging in the outskirts of Amsterdam. This ambitious project of developing a new international city centre has been carefully planned not only in respect to traditional urban planning aspects such as infrastructure, environmental factors and aesthetics, but also in order to generate genuine relevant and interesting urban experiences.
The overarching purpose of this paper is to introduce a general model of the psychological structure of experiences and to illustrate how this model can be used in construing and analyzing emotional design.


Urban experiences, the structure of experiences, emotional design