Press Release
Arizona State University collaborates with Dutch partners on groundbreaking sustainable development plan

The Netherlands’ Municipality of Haarlemmermeer, home to the Netherlands’ world famous Schiphol Airport, is working to become one of northern Europe’s centers for sustainability-driven commerce. Arizona State University (ASU) is home to the United States’ leader in sustainability education and research. Together, along with private partners in the Haarlemmermeer region, ASU and the municipality are collaborating to create the world’s first regional plan based on the principles of a “circular economy”. The project, “Haarlemmermeer Beyond Sustainability,” will be coordinated by the Global Sustainability Solutions Center (GSSC) at Haarlemmermeer, a program within the Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiatives at ASU’s Global Institute of Sustainability. The center will partner with the municipality, Park 20I20 and SADC (Schiphol Area Development Company) to create a regional visioning and planning strategy that will close resource loops in the most efficient, economical and sustainable manner possible. “Sustainability is not a voluntary option, we don’t see it as a choice. It is our duty and inevitably the new way of living – the new economy,” said John Nederstigt, alderman of the Municipality of Haarlemmermeer. “Partnering with the US’ leading sustainability education and research university is crucial to our real goal to create a circular economy and society.” Situated just southwest of Amsterdam in the basin of a drained lake, and with Schipol Airport as a primary economic driver, Haarlemmermeer hopes to create what it calls a “sustainable silicon valley” where business, research and education institutions freely collaborate. “SADC strives to develop and manage their business locations as sustainably as possible,“ said Dick van der Harst, chief operating officer of SADC. “With ASU’s study of the circular economy, we hope to further strengthen the cohesion of our sustainability actions and those of others.” ASU’s center in Haarlemmermeer will act as facilitator for the municipality and various stakeholders in the region to define and outline the groundbreaking strategic plan. The project includes designing the circular economy strategy and identifying closed loop energy, water, matter and other resource cycles that are pragmatic, market-based and adaptable for the region. “The challenge is to create a development strategy for the region and its various area developments as a whole that aims to achieve a high level of sustainability,” said Marta Hulley Friedman, program manager for the ASU Walton Global Sustainability Solutions Centers. “The expertise from ASU’s sustainability scientists and scholars will help develop a strategy that will have a flexible framework based on adaptive governance principles that accommodates future innovation.” The visioning process commences in March 2014 with an executive working group of leaders from local businesses, communities and the municipal government to establish project definitions and outcomes. ASU researchers will then develop the strategy document with assistance from Dutch university partners. “With this collaboration, the Municipality of Haarlemmermeer will become a worldwide example of the application of the Cradle to Cradle and Circular Economy principle on a real life level,” said Coert Zachariasse, chief executive officer of Delta Development Group and director of Park 20I20. “I am delighted with the combination of political, business and academic leadership in this project, which is making a fantastic ambition a reality.” For more information about the ASU Walton Global Sustainability Solutions Center in Haarlemmermeer, visit ### About the Rob and Melani Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiatives The Rob and Melani Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiatives are the result of a $27.5 million investment in Arizona State University’s Global Institute of Sustainability by the Walton Family Foundation. Within the Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiatives, diverse teams of faculty, students, entrepreneurs, researchers, and innovators collaborate to deliver sustainability solutions, accelerate global impact, and inspire future leaders through eight distinct initiatives. For more information visit About the Municipality of Haarlemmermeer The Municipality of Haarlemmermeer ( borders the City of Amsterdam, Netherlands, and includes Schiphol Airport, the principal international airport of the Netherlands. Haarlemmermeer’s ambition is to become Western Europe’s most sustainable location for companies, organizations, residents and visitors. Haarlemmermeer has a unique position within the Amsterdam Metropolitan Region (over 2 million inhabitants). It is a relatively new city with 150,000 inhabitants Pioneering is in its blood. It functions as a rich environment for education and practice. Because of the large variety of industries and stakeholders, and the continuous growth of the airport as well as the number of residents and businesses, it is a true living laboratory for new sustainable innovations and developments. About Schiphol Area Development Company SADC (Schiphol Area Development Company) develops international and regional business locations in the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. Its mission is the integral development of high-scale and distinctive locations, with the aim to further strengthen the international competitiveness of the metropolitan area. SADC was founded in 1987 by four shareholders: the municipality of Haarlemmermeer (25%), the municipality of Amsterdam (25%), the Province of North-Holland (25%) and Schiphol Group (25%). This mix of shareholders means that SADC’s responsibility has both a commercial and a social aspect and, consequently, it focuses on integral area development, in which public and private parties – and their objectives – are united effectively. About Park 20I20 Park 20I20 is a development by Delta Development Group, VolkerWessels and Reggeborgh ( This unique project in the Municipality of Haarlemmermeer, nearby Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport, is being fully realized according to the Cradle to Cradle principle (C2C) by Architect William McDonough and Chemist Michael Braungart. The project includes highly sustainable office space with inspiring public space with meeting areas, sports facilities, a park café and various other amenities. With the adoption of Cradle to Cradle within a full business case a unique business model with a competitive edge has been created in the development of Park 20|20. Optimization of residual values is created by means of demountable building, by using material passports and materials that fulfill the ambitions of the C2C concept. Solar energy, water treatment and energy from waste and advanced techniques via the use of hot and cold storage gives the Park a solid base to continue striving towards the next steps for a circular economy. Within the whole design, human-centered well-being and productivity is crucial. Park 20|20 houses an educational Experience Center where C2C information, know-how and expertise is available. Companies located here include BSH Home Appliances, FOX Vakanties, FIFPro, Parkcafé Groen and shortly Bluewater will be housed there.


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