Prof. Paul Meurs (1963) grew up in Doorn and Gorssel. As an architect, he is specialised in advising on transformation assignments in the existing city. He has been a part-time professor at the department of Restoration, Modification, Intervention and Transformation (RMIT) of the Faculty of Architecture, Urbanism and Building Sciences of Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) since 2006. He works, on both a national and an international level, as an advisor and supervisor for municipalities, housing corporations, property developers and design bureaus. Paul graduated in 1988 from TU Delft with prof. Coen Temminck Groll, with the specialisation ‘Architecture and Restoration’, on a design for revitalising the inner city of Salvador da Bahia (Brazil). Subsequently, he worked as a guest researcher at São Paulo University (FAU USP) and for many years he organised research and exchange projects with Brazil. In 2000 he took his doctoral degree with Prof. Auke van der Woud at Vrije Universiteit (Free University) in Amsterdam on the subject of 'The modern historic city', a study on the transformations of Dutch inner cities in the period 1883-1940.
Paul’s strength lies in converting heritage value into guidelines or input for transformation processes, in line with Dutch heritage policy, in which the emphasis has shifted towards an area- and development-oriented approach. This means that heritage research should not only lead to recommendations for conservation, but should also serve to determine the room for change and the nature of such change. Paul focuses on the question of how the existing quality of a building or an area can become the point of departure for a new, appropriate development, for example in the form of city image and transformation guidelines, area visions, supervision and (occasionally) a design. Where is there room to be found for interventions in a building or an area? What is the scope for interventions, and how can the impact of such interventions on the heritage quality be determined? Since 2006, Paul has been involved in the redevelopment of Strijp R in Eindhoven, and since 2009 with the further development of Zaanse Schans and the modernisation of Tuinstadwijk (Garden city area), situated in the protected cityscape Zuidelijke Schil (Southern Shell) in Leiden. In all of these long-term projects he is focusing on linking the interests of the heritage with the transformation.
At TU Delft, Paul Meurs holds the chair of ‘Restoration and Transformation’. He is giving a series of lectures on Heritage Development and is a contributor to the Delft Lectures on Architecture, the bachelor education and the education at the RMIT Master of Science studios. Within the research programme he is working on a study on major intervention assignments (Zonnestraal, Rijks Museum), area-oriented monument care and world heritage. He has given guest lectures and organised workshops on five continents.
Interview together with Marinke Steenhuis in Building Business (2012)
Fifty years of heritage and space: from reconstruction to urban renewal - essay for the publication Future protected site? Protected cityscapes and villagescapes. Commissioned by the National Restoration Fund and the National Heritage Advisor,2011
Roles and functions
Professor (0,3 fte) chair ‘Restoration and Transformation’, Delft University of Technology, since 2007
Member of the Board of Mik Mak Foundation, Victor de Stuers Foundation (Heritage Academy) and Stadsherstel (Urban Regeneration) Schiedam
Supervisor Doubling Oosterpark Amsterdam, Tuinstadwijk (Garden city area) Leiden, member supervisory team Strijp R Eindhoven