by Tom Bosschaert

July 30, 2018

Tom Bosschaert

ReGen Villages is a one-of-a-kind master plan for a self-sustained housing neighborhood of 203 houses in the Netherlands. Located in Oosterwold, the 25-hectare site is only a short 20-minute journey from Amsterdam and exemplifies a regenerative, affordable, and genuinely sustainable community.

ReGen_v5_3_000 (1).jpg

Since mid-2017, Except Integrated Sustainability has partnered with the team at ReGen Villages, the project's initiator and developer, to help realize this unique and sustainable master plan. ReGen villages Oosterwold's most prominent features are: 

  • The focus is not on energy and materials but the quality of life and satisfaction of its inhabitants. Community centers provide central spots for work, education, social life, support, and celebration. 
  • The neighborhood is mainly car-free and prepares for a new era in mobility away from fossil fuels, such as self-driving cars and drone deliveries. 
  • A fully integrated closed-loop (circular) urban metabolism ensures that the community is self-sustained in energy, potable water, food production, and wastewater management.
  • "A half-hour commute from Amsterdam, a piece of farmland is slated to become a new kind of neighborhood. Vertical farms and traditional fields and orchards surrounding homes will supply food to people living there. Food waste will turn into fish feed for on-site aquaculture. Houses will filter rainwater but won't have driveways. Lastly, a "village OS" tech platform will use AI to oversee and help manage the community's renewable energy, food production, water supply, and waste."

    Fast Company

ReGen Villages

Resilience via sustainable agriculture

ReGen Villages Oosterwold is a lush landscape with integrated food systems based on permaculture and agroforestry. Greenhouses provide efficient hydroponic growing systems and vertical farming for fresh vegetables, fruits, and herbs. These systems help ReGen villages to:

  • Enhance resilience against changing weather patterns and flooding with integrated stormwater management.
  • Develop a landscape optimized for enhancing biodiversity, ecosystem services, and health benefits to inhabitants.
  • Ensure a healthy city approach with abundant plants and trees, natural renewable materials,  toxin prevention, and zero fossil fuel.
  • Build affordable housing with modular components that reduce production costs yet increase the quality.
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Challenges in Oosterwold

Located near the city of Almere, the 25-hectare site for ReGen Villages sits in the pretty Oosterwold region. The area has relatively progressive planning regulations - great to support sustainable living projects. However, a rule that prevented connectivity and collaboration between separate housing blocks provided difficulties in implementing our advanced, integrated, and sustainable neighborhood.

We worked diligently with the municipality to ensure we followed all rules accurately with the master plan receiving full approval in July 2018. 

To learn more about the project, see this article in Fast Company, or visit the website of ReGen Villages.

July 30, 2018

Client & Partners

Project team

  • Tom Bosschaert


  • Emma Westerduin

    Architect and Project Manager

  • Jacob Verhaart

    Head of Science, Industrial Ecologist

  • Antonia Sore


  • Caroline Mazaro

    Architectonic Designer
    Except Integrated Sustainability

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