The pilot area for the VARCITIES project is a former hospital site in the medieval centre of the city. This fully built area will be transformed into a green district, where riverbanks will be re-opened and the connection between the city centre and the river landscape will be re-established.
The area will become a multifunctional neighbourhood with different housing typologies, economical functions like hotels, shops, restaurants and cafés and co-working spaces. Cultural attractions like the new performing arts hall for the city and a museum site on the history and future of health care will be the heart of this area.
VARCITIES will finance and develop five different actions:
- Riverside mobile urban living room for cultural activities (an intervention that will revitalise and make the public space along the re-opened river Dijle-branch more attractive).
- Sensors for health & water measurements (small weather stations will gather data to measure the exposure of citizens to climatic conditions and water quality).
- Health trail with the “moving Bench”, therapeutic sensory garden for elderly people (an innovative concept offering a complete exercise package thus contributing to an integral, smart, local health, sports and exercise policy).
- IoT infrastructure (screens) for smart lighting and noise: a solution enabling connectivity, smart lighting, communication & interaction for measuring usage of the site.
- Mobility-sensors: measure the pedestrian and bike flows – sensors on bikes for measuring air quality/noise, and intelligent cameras that distinguish and analyse pedestrian & bikers on the site. Sensors that track broader trajectories of bikers & pedestrians will be implemented to address the following challenges: air quality, urban regeneration, public health and well-being.