Castagneto Carducci, IT


Regeneration of Parco delle Sughere (Cork Oaks Park)

Since Forties the community of Castagneto Carducci looked at Parco delle Sughere (Cork Oaks Park) as a place where the sense of common identity could be materialized in a physical space. Cattle market firstly, then trailer park in Eighties, since 2000 's the park was managed by social advancement associations. In this way the park became an important place for sociality and leisure. Today this place hosts the most significative events for collective participation. Nevertheless, getting on in years, the equipments and the structures became inadequate, for dimensions and functionality, in regard to the current needs.

Looking at the shape of the territory, it is possible to see how it is made of linear elements: the continuous Thyrrenian coastline, the marine pinewood extended from Versilia to Argentario, the ancient via Aurelia nowadays flanked by contemporary national routes. This landscape, observed traveling by train or by car, can be perceived as "horizontal" or "linear". The transportation routes are the main strategical resources but at the same time the principal source of pollution and spatial detachment. The project site is located at the head of a long zone running from North to South, that connects the routes belt with Donoratico's urban tissue, which urban shape is generated from the ancient via Aurelia. The park could be considered as the gate to the town coming from the North. This linear part of urban tissue, full of unexpressed potentiality, is the place where it is possible to start a renovation process of whole urban settlement.

Transit flows, use of the areas and activity densities analysis, demonstrate that nowadays is used only a small part of the park. The cork oak trees - the place name elements - are only minor presences in regard to the fruition of the park. For these reasons the constructions are organized as architectonical elements positioned beside three margins of the project area. On one hand they separate the inner space from pollution and noise sources, on the other hand they redefine the park's spaces and restore the central importance of most valuable trees. The parking area located on the southern side becomes an ideal continuation of the park. The uninterrupted horizontal surfaces and the demolition of barriers or opaque fences give physical and visual continuity. From a formal perspective, this work is a research on the possibilities of linear shapes to generate activities and density on two-dimensional space.

The modular design of the volumes permits a construction realized following several steps in time, according to the availability of financial resources provided mainly by the citizens. The wood, as main material, allows a construction made directly by the community, like it happened in the past. The design is sustainable in ecological terms, it is reversible but it is non temporary. It uses the same materials already present in the park, with a clear formal language.

The regeneration of Parco delle Sughere aims to give new structures and meanings to a symbolic place for the community. This is the occasion to start a brand new renovation of a large part of the territory.

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Status: Unbuilt
Location: Castagneto Carducci, IT
Firm Role: Architecture, Landscape