ALICANTE: NEXT INTERCULTURAL CITY 2014!
Nowadays different cultures are very present in our lifes. As I found out looking for my second reference, Europe has a plan for that situation.
The arrival of foreigners is increasing quite fast in Alicante, that is why this city has all the requirements to become the next Intercultural City 2014.
This is the situation of Alicante but ones of the neighborhoods with more quantity of inmigrants are Carolinas Altas, Sidi Ifni and Garbinet, before this areas, Virgen del Remedio and Colonia Requena are the one with higher level of inmigration. These areas have in common the following nationalities living together.
In this part of the city there are many cultural associations but they don’t have a proper installations . The associations of specific nationalities usually have an office and they do activities in parks or in other associations named Centro Loyola or Hotel Asociaciones that are far from that area, but they have bigger rooms for the events they need.
As next Intercultural City 2014 all of this associations must start dialogue to share with the rest the individual progress or ideas. So somehow they will merge to break some physical or culture problems.
As I choose my first reference, we will choose a middle active point in the are we will work on. With this description the roundabout will be the perfect option as a defined space with high amount of traffic and visitors.
In this area we have another public spaces but this one is the one that doesn’t have a defined use. People can go throw that space but is not ready to place sport games or to hang out with friends due to the uncomfortable traffic around and no proper urban design for any specific activity.
Then we have 2415m2 free to work on and create a project which satisfy the need of the neighborhood and provide new concept to surprise the citiziens. The roundabout has 4 vias ending int his point, a tranvia going throw and 3 pedestrian crosses.
If we want to create something for associations we have to know how they work.
Every association gets money from each member every month and some extra quantity by the council depends of the kind of association and the project it has planned to do. Then the member can provide the center with some extra money or it can receive donatives for external organizations or companies.
Knowing th amount of associations in the area, they would invert in the project such a small quantity of money like 40 euros per month and if people knows the project and is interested on the idea will give something more as well. Then as a European project the council would have to invert some extra money as it does to another city events.
But we need something more if we want to create something which involves all the city in. And this external agent in the project will be the traffic and the huge amount of visitor that everyday can see how the project is going on.
These are the approximated calculations which show us the possible money we could get voluntary if there is a good communications and advertisement behind the project.
There are some interesting point of the roundabout where people have time to have a look or read about the project. We don’t need to atrack people to come to this place but we need them to feel involved on the idea, so placing a poster will be the simpliest way to inform the visitors, so what we want to do is to play with them and create a easy and smart game which would make people invert in the project even if they don’t realize that they do.
The game consists on create a multicolorful picture of a human face for example by the random position of the coins, Euros or Cents (silver, gold, copper) .Then they will be the ones who unknowing the idea will create a multicultural image of the project. This game would be placed in those strategic points, bus stops, pedestrian crosses, tram stop or light traffic where people uses to stop without doing nothing.
We will be ready to create at center of communication between associations that they were looking for.
The organization of the project would be carried out by the council and some interested associations. And what they need is some atelier area to work and study all the knowledge of every society, and stage to show everything to the rest making evidence of the Intercultural City that is being developed. And playground to make them being closer and creates an open communication between generations and cultures.
So this would be the design:
Exposition on two walls along the rails, playground in the most practicable area of the roundabout, and atelier in a secondary area connected by a new pedestrian crossing.
And at night when the train would be gone, the stage will appear by using a transformable infrastructure out of the walls along the rails.
These are the needs of the associations in the area and the minimal actuation that we can do to start the Intercultural City Project 2014. But as architects we can improve this basic design and provide them with some surprising programs that they don’t expect as the stage or the game were.
The possibility of the roundabout as an infinite round circulation.
The combination of usual programs with others that can implement the benefit of the exchange center as a parlor room (locutorio), restaurant, library…
The benefits of the surroundings: balconies, bar terraces, residential entrances, empty locals…