Team Representative: Irene Benet Morera (ES) – Architect; Associate: Marta Benet Morera (ES) – Architect
I. Benet Morera & M. Benet Morera
1. How did you form the team for the competition?
We are two sisters architects graduated from the same University. Although we work independently, we decided to join in this project to contribute ideas to help improve the city from which our family comes.
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?
The main point of our project is to make small interventions in a ‘sauteed’ way in the neighbourhood so that different uses that promote productivity in the neighbourhood coexist. Fist of all, the training school linked to the transmission of immaterial culture and the promotion of entrepreneurship; in the second place, the dissemination of cultural outreach related to productive history; and lastly, the introduction of three types of housing: productive, social and temporary, which will help to remedy the shortcomings of the neighbourhood. These interventions from a domestic scale to a public or global scale, create a new productive neighbourhood based on the tradition that shapes our future. New ways of inhabiting will prevent motor displacement, foster social relations and support entrepreneurial initiatives that will help maintain our economies and culture.
3. How did this issue and the questions raised by the site mutation meet?
One of the objectives of the project was the elimination of large traffic on ‘Avenida de Ladrillares’ to encourage its use as a pedestrian path. To this end, a new two-way south road was created for the passage of large vehicles. Another important element in the project was the use of an empty space for the realization of a large square where all the public uses converge, as well as the connection of the different green spaces inside and outside the neighbourhood.
4. Have you treated this issue previously? What were the reference projects that inspired yours?
It’s the first time we do a project like this, and it was a great challenge for us. We have been inspired by projects where interventions have been minimal, but which have led to major changes and, above all, projects where sustainability, tradition and territory have been taken into account. The Irrigation System Project in ‘Las Huertas Termales de Caldés’ de Cíclica + Cavaa Arquitectes, the new headquarters of MUHBA by BAAS Arquitectura and the social housing project in Formentera: Life Reusing Posidonia by Carles Oliver Barceló, Reparto: Antonio Martín Procopio, Joaquín Moyá Costa, Alfonso Reina Ferragut, Maria Antònia Garcías Roig.
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?
The project heard from different associations and entities that had different proposals to make in the neighborhood, but we believe that our proposal has sufficient flexibility to be adapted to other possible needs arising from proposals for citizen participation. In our proposal, there’s a paragraph devoted to the phases in which it has been thought that the project will be developed. We believe that the transformation must be gradual so that the community can adapt to this new productive system and so that all the actors involved understand its relevance in the project.
6. Is it the first time you have been awarded a prize at Europan? How could this help you in your professional career?
This is the first time we participate in Europan. For us, this special mention gives us the opportunity to contribute with our point of view to solve an existing problem in a city to which we are very fond.
Functions: Architecture, design
Average age of the associates: 32 years old
Has your team, together or separately, already conceived or implemented some projects and/or won any competition? If yes, which ones?
Now we are jointly doing the reform of a family home.