In cities driven by economic gain, there is not much room for those who do not rightly fit within established structures. And even if they are given a spot, they are obliged to vacate it as soon as more profitable activities present themselves. The history of the NDSM shipyard in Amsterdam demonstrates the power of self-development and of self-organisation. Make Your City gives a fascinating historical overview of this redevelopment and elaborates on the lessons that can be drawn from this. The city as a ‘hull’ is a development strategy that regards the city as a place for production and not as a place for consumption only; a strategy that applies an alternative exploitation model for buildings by organising the creative and financial power of the users; a strategy that makes it possible for a group to have joined ownership of a site, thereby gaining authority and continuity.
Eva de Klerk is one of the initiators of the redevelopment of the NDSM shipyard. This is her personal story about organisational processes, ups and downs, and the complex relationship with authorities. However, it is first and foremost a guide to self-development in the city.