Designing a Livable Neighbourhood: The Woonerf Concept

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In this short course, you will learn what is the Woonerf, its history behind the concept, the context in which these streets work best, and what are the principles that make a street a Woonerf. We will cover the legal and design principles and will show these principles in a real-life example.

The Woonerf concept was developed in Delft in the 1960s and 1970s and spread to other Dutch cities. Woonerven are residential streets in which pedestrians share the road with vehicles, while vehicles should follow the pedestrians’ pace. The use of physical barriers and obstacles conveys the impression that pedestrians can use the entire street, reducing traffic volumes significantly.

Join us for a short course exploring the concept, and allow us to show you how to turn a local living street into a Woonerf.


3 Modules

Recommended schedule

Half a day

Total length

1 hour and 30 minutes

What will you learn?

  • The Woonerf in general: its origin, development, and setting within a city.
  • Its legal framework.
  • Five criteria for designing a woonerf.

Who is this course for?

  • Professionals in the field of urban mobility, urban planners, architects, civil engineers, etc. 
  • Students majoring in urban planning and transportation.
  • Urban activists, city enthusiasts, and concerned citizens.


Picture of Dick van Veen

Dick van Veen

Dick is a senior traffic engineer and urban designer with almost 20 years of experience. In his work he is bridging the gap between traffic and public space, between ‘flowing’ and ‘staying’. For him, designing is never about just cars, but always involves the human condition. Street design is never a blueprint; guidelines are merely a starting point for design. Dick has helped many cities change toward more people friendly streets and places, in the Netherlands, Europe and North America.

Picture of Lior Steinberg

Lior Steinberg

Lior helps cities to look beyond functionality and to plan urban spaces that make people smile. His specialty is the multidisciplinary approach to urban planning and bicycle plans: it is never only about infrastructure, but also the quality of life, urban design, politics, communications, and many more. He worked on bicycle strategies and plans in different countries, like Tel Aviv’s bicycle strategy and Rotterdam’s bicycle vision.

About the course

Free & Paid Options

You can access and participate in the course for free. If you want to earn a  certificate upon completion, you can purchase it. The certificate will be accessible only once the course is successfully completed. Read more here.

Designing a Livable Neighbourhood: The Woonerf Concept

What Urban Professionals Have to Say

Great course for a EU project practitioners like myself. Simple and easy- applicable solution, usable in some future calls for the cities and municipalities. I highly recommend the course!
Andrea Novakovic
Educo Consulting

Ratings and Reviews

Avg. Rating
2 Ratings
What's your experience? We'd love to know!
David André Tirman
Posted 3 months ago
Woonerfs: Placing people back in first place while putting cars in their place.

The Woonerf overview and design course served as an excellent reminder of what needs to be done to make streets and related spaces people-centric once again instead of auto-centric. The course outlined some simple, sensible, yet principled solutions to significantly calming auto traffic while expanding people-oriented spaces for walking, playing, and neighbourhood social interaction.

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Nick G
Posted 4 months ago
Nice cource about liveable neighbourhood (woonerf)

This is a beginner-friendly course giving insights on how to plan a comfortable and safe neighborhood (Woonerf). Quite a nice course in general. I would suggest to add a bit more examples (both positive and negative) of existing woonerfs so that we could see common mistakes and learn from best practices.

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