The Heerlen artist Michel Huisman showed his plans for the Maankwartier the first time to the public in June 2003. In the years to come, his ideas have been elaborated, resulting in the master plan in 2008.
He made the design as a 'free work, hors concours", as Huisman says, in the time that everyone in Heerlen realised that something needed to be done to the station area. It was, in the words of Huisman, becoming a inhospitable area. Small, charming shops made way for large-scale stores and characterless chains.