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(The Netherlands pavilion designer John Kormeling shares his inspiration behind the crazy eight known as "Happy Street.")
When people think of the Netherlands, a low lying country with numerous dams, tulips and clogs come to mind. At the upcoming Shanghai 2010 World Expo, the country will demonstrate that it has far more to offer.
John Kormeling, the designer of Netherlands Pavilion at Shanghai Expo
The Netherlands Pavilion, designed by architect John Kormeling, is called Happy Street. "The inspiration came from the film of the Expo itself," Kormeling said. "A 'better city' means the old one is not good enough, so I started with the bases of cities – the street to set everything together, including factory, shop, farm and cinema."
There are 28 small houses and various other objects along the pedestrian strip. These houses will present exhibitions exploring themes such as technological innovation, urban development, environment sustainability, culture and art, and many other issues.
"This time, it is not the classic pavilion with long lines of visitors waiting outside and a presentation inside. We have no doors, and everyone is welcome to join our party," Kormeling said.
Moreover, the pedestrian street is shaped like an 8, a lucky number in China that suggests fortune.
"That is a kind of coincidence, but I am happy that happened," Kormeling said.
The 2010 World Expo will formally open May 1 and last until October 31. Participants include 192 countries and 50 international organizations. Organizers expect the event will draw some 70 million visitors.