Heritage & Design


About this minor

In this minor, you will learn to develop concepts for the transformation of urban areas, landscapes, public spaces and buildings. The basis for these interventions is a historical analysis of the site and knowledge of architectural history. The challenge is to preserve monumental values, existing qualities and the sense of place – while giving way for an intervention that allows for a new function and prepares a site for an up-to-date sustainable use. Studies of heritage and other subjects form an important framework.
You will immerse yourself in the issue of cultural-historical continuity and urban identity. In this minor the focus lies on how today we handle cultural heritage and necessary urban renewal with reference to changing functional requirements. You will develop your skills as a designer of interventions to historic buildings of cultural heritage quality. Related to the urban renewal we also focus on the use of public areas and historical buildings in an old city.

To approach these complex tasks, you will be challenged to familiarise yourself with the specific design skills and knowledge of urban development of Dutch cities. In addition, you will delve into analysis methods and various theoretical approaches, as well as in cultural, societal, philosophical and environmental aspects of Heritage and Architecture. You will have the opportunity to gain knowledge in and to practise with aspects such as historical identity, value assessment and spatial intervention with objects and structures of cultural heritage in a historical environment. History is used as inspiration for the design.

In the studios research is done in small groups. For the design assignments, we will work in a transdisciplinary manner, using a variety of design skills (architectural/landscape design, sketching, mood boards, collage, models, etc.).

Learning outcomes

You will practise in analysis of urban, architectural and landscape heritage and will design two simple spatial interventions: 1. in a cultural landscape or urban green heritage site; 2. in an existing building (complex).

At the end of the minor you will have enhanced/improved your:

  • knowledge about the main characteristics and periods of urbanisation and landscape transformation in The Netherlands from the tenth to the twenty-first century;
  • ability to place these developments in their art-historical, economic, political and demographic context;
  • knowledge about cultural heritage in the form of urban projects and structures;
  • ability to apply different methods and techniques for analysis of built heritage, regarding its urban context and historical development, the functionality, the materials used, and the technical development;
  • ability to recognise current urban problems concerning cultural heritage;
  • knowledge about approaches and work methods concerning appreciation, repurpose, and redevelopment of historically valuable objects within a historic town;
  • ability to define and draw the historical characteristics and actual meaning of a specific cultural landscape or a historic green heritage (park);
  • ability to combine both the characteristics of the landscape or urban green with new spatial developments;
  • ability to make a small-scaled landscape architectural design for an intervention in the cultural landscape or green heritage;
  • ability to reflect on the combination of preservation and transformation of historical landscape patterns and the development of new interventions.
  • understanding of ‘Architectural Heritage’ and relevant terminology (e.g. ‘Values of Heritage’, ‘Intangible Cultural Heritage’, ‘Integrity’, ‘Reversibility’, and ‘Authenticity’, etc.).
  • ability to make architectural and spatial design choices on different scales, based on analysis and evaluation of current historical information;
  • ability to put historic research and contextual analysis in a functional relation with a design task;
  • ability to combine the existing building fabric, methodically recorded and analysed, with your own modern design concept to create a stimulating project;
  • ability to present and explain your design choices, justify your position about merging old and new in case of an architectural intervention.

Good to know

Registration for this thematic minor is on a first-come, first-served basis and available places. (No lottery draw).

Student at Leiden University, TU Delft or Erasmus University Rotterdam?
Check the eligibility matrix to see if your bachelor’s degree programme offers access to this and other minors at

Student at another educational institution?
External students cannot register via EduXchange. Interested in this minor, read the whole registration procedure at

For information about the courses, visit the TU Delft study guide.
For additional information on this minor, visit the TU Delft minor page.

Teaching method and examination

Design studios, lectures, excursions and a workshop

Check the detailed overview of courses, learning activities and study load at

Link to more information

  • Credits
    ECTS 30
  • Level
  • Contact coordinator
  • Selection minor
If anything remains unclear, please check the FAQ of TU Delft.


  • Start date

    2 September 2024

    • Ends
      9 February 2025
    • Term *
      Block MIN N S1
    • Location
    • Instruction language
    Currently no more seats available
These offerings are valid for students of Leiden University