Plaque C. van Traa (1980) Cor van Kralingen

photo Otto Snoek
About the artwork

On the corner of the Meent and the Rodezand, a plaque with the portrait of the urban planner Cornelis van Traa (Rotterdam, 1899 - 1977) hangs against the facade of the Timmerhuis (formerly Stadstimmerhuis). Van Traa has become known as the designer of the 'Basic Plan for Reconstruction'. In this plan, a modern city was advocated, with a departure from the historic city triangle. Because the urban functions were separated from each other, the residential function disappeared from the center to the suburbs and commercial zones and traffic flows received all the attention. Moreover, the center was moved slightly to the west, so that the Coolsingel now connected directly to the Leuvehaven and the Maas. Van Traa's Basic Plan was adopted by the city council in 1946 and has been decisive for the urban design of the current Rotterdam center.

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About the artist

Cor van Kralingen (Rotterdam, 1908 - Mijnsheerenland, 1977) was a sculptor and illustrator. Between 1935 and 1960 he made many pen drawings for the Varagids and publishing house Thieme. During the reconstruction period, Van Kralingen was able to design reliefs and facing bricks in Rotterdam. He designed it Twentsch Ros (1948) on the roof of the then Twentsche Bank on the Blaak and the eight animal figures of the Hofplein fountain (1955). He also made a number of war monuments, such as Falling man (1951) en Woman with pigeon (1965) at the war graves on Cemetery Crooswijk, and the Ttraveling woman (1958) on the Goereesestraat in Charlois. His style was characterized as invariably figurative. He liked simplicity and a classically oriented beauty.

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