Lammermarkt en Nieuwe Beestenmarkt – Leiden

Commissioned by
Gemeente Leiden
parking garage by JKH Architecten
Surface area
1.9 ha
In cooperation with
Rots Maatwerk, Rinny Kooi
Planting plan
Piet Oudolf
Marseille Buiten, Buro JP

In the visual quality plan of LOLA, the Lammermarkt was called ‘the jewel in the crown’ of the Singelpark, although its position is a hybrid one. On the one hand it should become a park, but due to the annual 3 October festivities, it also had to be a square providing sufficient space for 10.000 – 20.000 visitors. The design was further complicated by the existing 18th century windmill De Valk, built on a knoll.

So, the new Lammermarkt is square and park at the same time. The shape of the historical bastion is emphasised by the broad green strips bordering the water. People stroll across park paths and can sit or lie down in the grass to enjoy the sun. At the Lammermarkt location, the Leidse Centrumroute (the route through Leiden City centre) is momentarily ‘enclosed’ in green islands, thereby surrounding car drivers with green for a while. The same goes for cyclists. On the city centre side, the paths broaden out into a square space of over 3.000m2. For the planting plan we called in Piet Oudolf, who applied a wonderful palet of plants, especially on the knoll. 

Sitting edges of natural stone around the square and in the slope of the knoll make for informal seating close to the water squirts. Finally, only in 2021, after an intensive and drawn out period dealing with the design process, permits and licenses, a large round wooden bench was constructed over the emergency exit of the parking garage.