Local Time Machine update

The Amsterdam Time Machine to collaborate in the 750th anniversary of Amsterdam city

In 2025, the city of Amsterdam will celebrate its 750th anniversary. One of the three central themes of the Municipality of Amsterdam’s plan for this celebration is ‘The new map of Amsterdam’. This ‘new map’ will be both a visual document and a participatory tool for public discussion on how to create a more digital, green, and inclusive city.  

The Amsterdam Time Machine (ATM) has been asked by the Municipality to collaborate in the overall celebration as well as in several smaller projects, in which the so-called soft tissue of the city will be visualized on the basis of historical data. This will offer the chance to have new conversations about the future development of the city.  

The first project takes place in Amsterdam South East. ATM will collect cultural life and events of this part of the city and enrich those with 3D models that show the historical evolution of the district. Eventually, citizens will be able to add their own stories to this visualization. The aim is to increase citizens’ participation in the development of their living environment and improve the dialogue with the local government. 

The second project focuses on the Jewish quarter in the historical center of Amsterdam. As a contribution to, and the city council, we will visualize the centuries-old history of the Jewish presence in Amsterdam. ATM will develop an app enriched with serious gaming functionalities, to make the rich history of this part of the city and of its inhabitants available for forms of smart (local) tourism. 

The third project centers on the ATM’s participation in a project of the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences focusing on Haven-Stad (Port City), a very large new residential neighborhood, which the city of Amsterdam plans to develop in the coming years. For this project, ATM will analyze the historical roots of this maritime part of the city and contribute new ideas for the design of a smart, future proof city. This project builds on a recent successful collaboration with Arcam – Architecture Center Amsterdam, focusing on Amsterdam’s relationship with water throughout its centuries-long history and looking into the future. 

Overall, the 750 jubilee offers the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the value of unlocking the cultural heritage and stories of the past for the development of future proof, livable, and inclusive cities. 

A reconstruction of the Vlooienburg neighbourhood, a key area for Jewish Amsterdam, in the early 17th century.
Reconstruction and credits: 4D Research Lab