Team Representative: Cornelia Bräuer (AT) – architect
Associates: Airam Dorta González (ES), Paloma Delgado Montoro (ES) – architects
Contributors: Anna Wolf (AT) – illustrator; Ariadna Mulet (ES) – architect
Favoritenstrasse 62, 1040 Wien (AT)
+43 680 11 54 984 – email@example.com
A. Dorta González, C. Bräuer & P. Delgado Montoro
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1. How did you form the team for the competition?
Like many of our peers we studied and worked abroad and by doing so, we got to know each other. Europan 14 was the first time we all worked together, we are three very different characters and our international backgrounds provided us with different and complementary skills - to us this was the most interesting part in our collaboration. This competition gave us the opportunity to confront and hone our own expertise in order to find productive and effective solutions.
2. How do you define the main issue of your project, and how did you answer on this session main topic: the place of productive activities within the city?
To us, the main topic was interlinkage to create connections between people, between different urban and social functions and in the case of Linz in particular this means connecting two cut-off urban districts. Our solution is based on building up a very robust and flexible active ground floor to enable various work and production scenarios. And in addition to that, creating very diverse residential typologies to invite people of different backgrounds and with different needs to live in the same neighbourhood. All combined in a dense and singular structure. Creating interlinkage means to create spaces which allow overlapping, connection, exchange and diversity thereby encouraging the flourishing of all kind of productive activities, together with their associated productive spaces within the city.
3. How did this issue and the questions raised by the site mutation meet?
The competition site is a post-industrial nearly unused space. This wide blank area, which currently lacks of urban structure and significance, is perfectly suited to fulfill our interlinkage proposal, reactivating both urban districts. Furthermore, the connection to the Volksgarten through a generous passage will improve the urban perception of the area. We can ensure a productive activity by rearranging the area, the project provides housing, education and different activities for the new agents involved allowing new connections between the various crowds. Our proposal also creates a new landmark, an urban milestone designed for a specific goal: to integrate both industrial and residential activities in order to bring purpose and definition to an area which is, until now, abandoned to its own fate. The project intensifies the existing commercial axis with an alternative proposal based on the showroom model.
4. Have you treated this issue previously? What were the reference projects that inspired yours?
Some of us have worked on the subject of trading in an urban scale before: in our final Project of studies, as well as, in the competition "Handel & Wandel, Re-vitalisierung eines Handelplatzes in Hamburg". Studying the relation between production and trading; and its urban integration is a new topic for us. It is also the reasons why we were interested in the competition in the first place. Our main references are: - The historical guilds: how a trade and craft agreement can organize a social group. - The original city-planning of Bern by the Counts of Zahringer: a functionalist city with sunny disposition, organized to optimize the functioning of crafts, trade and living. It is a paradigm of mixed use and sustainability. The streets are partially covered to ensure their functioning by any weather conditions. - The Free University of Berlin - Project "Grundrisse, Housing solutions for the immaterial worker" by njiric+ arhitekti: The project provides each worker a house to live and work. It is a structure composed by different typologies of cells where inhabiting and working are merged. - Atom concept by Cedric Price: A theory to strategically rearrange the urban system toward more socially productive and educational ends. - SESC Fábrica Pompeia von Lina Bo Bardi and its collaborative production.
5. Urban-architectural projects like the ones in Europan can only be implemented together with the actors through a negotiated process and in time. How did you consider this issue in your project?
Due to a challenging position of the existing buildings, the negotiation between all actors and the official approvals of the city may prove to be a quite intricate and potentially long process. Our proposal considers therefore to first activate the area which is now mostly available in order to ensure a smooth integration of all parties involved (including the ÖBB) into the project. This prevents an undesired drastic and hasty change of uses among the existing buildings. The buildings which are currently still active will work as protection against the railways and ensure the density throughout this early phase of the project. The project will be reinforced from an urban point of view by a tower on the Northern part during the second phase, which will provide optimal density and attract new actors. Our proposal is flexible and scalable due to its neutral grid organization. .
6. Is it the first time you have been awarded a prize at Europan? How could this help you in your professional career?
This was a succession of first-time experiences: working together and being awarded at Europan are all new to us. We, of course, hope we can still contribute with our ideas and competences to the further development of this project. This first fruitful collaboration encourages us to pursue our "digital office" and to keep working together.