A parking space that generates energy and makes people happy

To contribute to the National Climate Agreement, the municipality of Heemstede focuses on solar panels on rooftops and above parking lots. One of them is the parking space at the Groenendaal sports park. On behalf of the municipality of Heemstede, Changency designed and facilitated a citizens participation process.

The goal was to reach a broadly supported design vision for a ‘solar parking’ near the sports park. The wishes and ideas of residents, associations, and entrepreneurs were not only collected but also visually presented and translated into three scenarios, each different in theme and ambition level.

Change the process | Change the product

Municipality Heemstede, Energy Region of North Holland

What Design Can Do, Kennisland

2022 –


Research report (NL)


How do you design a parking lot that generates energy and makes people happy? And how do you combine the installation of solar panels….

… that can provide energy to 200 households with other ecological challenges such as circularity, enhancing biodiversity, and climate adaptation?

Insight & Strategy

The parking lot at Groenendaal sports park is essentially a public space. Cars are just guests there…

… Especially on weekends, it is busy. During the week, few cars are parked. With the construction of the solar parking, there is an opportunity to transform this place into a green public space, promoting both social interaction and healthy behavior.

Creative Approach

The action research approach focused on stimulating the imagination of the participants…

….What would residents or users wish for in this place? How can you combine sustainable energy generation with other functions? Designers and architects played a crucial role: they inspired participants with innovative practical solutions and visualized ideas. Together, we developed a (preliminary) list of requirements and three possible scenarios.

The parking space sports park Groenendaal
Invitation kick-off meeting
Impression workshops
Impression outcomes workshop 1
Impression outcomes workshop 2
Research report: From public consultation to co-design


The participation process consisted of a series of eight interviews with experts and stakeholders, street interviews with users of the sports park (young and old)…

… and three design sessions with residents, associations, businesses, and representatives from the municipality of Heemstede. Specifically, we delivered a programme of requirements and wishes, three visualized scenarios, and the research report ‘Six lessons on co-creation in the energy transition.’

About the Client

The department Heemstede Sustainable contributes to making the municipality, neighborhoods, homes, and businesses future-proof…

…Together with residents and businesses, they work towards a livable and beautiful Heemstede, both now and in the future.