PROJECT: INTERNATIONAL LANDSCAPE DESIGN COMPETITION FOR TIRANA’S PARK OF FAITH
- PLACE: Boulevard “Martyr of Nation”, TIRANA
- PHASE: INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION
For the challenge proposed by Atelier Albania with this International Landscape Design Competition for Tirana’s Park of Faith, PROAP has joined forces with Albanian office ARKIMADE so that with a strong local and international team, the questions and issues proposed by the competition organizers can be addressed with a local focus of the design proposal. This collaboration permits getting the most out of the two companies experience and bring to the design the complementary expertise of their teams.
The city of Tirana as suffered overwhelming transformations in the last two decades with particular consequences in its urban condition, with a huge increase in population and a consequently increase in car and vehicles circulation. Demographics and rural exodus as had a significant impact in the city’s life and organization. This transformation is a dynamic that the main purposes of this competition reflect.
“Faith” is perceived not as part of a particular system of religious belief but as a spiritual condition of Mankind. The “Park of Faith” is considered in our proposal as the opportunity, within the city and its numerous religious temples and buildings, to create spiritual spaces not specifically associated with one or another religion, but with the spiritual condition of Men.
The matrix is the unit from which the new layer of the city’s vocabulary emerges. Its simple rule gets materialized with different intensities and intentions, function of the urban condition and context. In the main axis, it reaches its peak of formalization and perception, since the rules are quite clear and need that rigidity as a support for space clarification. Different lanes for different traffic, parking spaces, bicycle paths, sidewalks…
Once established the axis as the most rigid element of the matrix materialization, its rarefaction begins in the direction of the fragmented open spaces of the Park. Patch becomes line that becomes point, all in search of a spatial referential for the overall design. Inside the gardens, the intervention is reduced to a minimum, recognizing some of the existing elements and eliminating others always in search of simplification and clarity. The only new and stronger elements to be added, after this first effort of simplification, are the Landart sculptures introduced as a tool for creating spaces of contemplation and meditation. Simple forms (circles of various sizes) are created in several ways: topographical manipulation (depressions), tree edges, water features, linear patterns, etc. The circle in its purest form, suggests the urge for gathering, inherent in all animals, and appeals to concentration and meditation while appealing for the feelings of unity, wholeness, and infinity.
Light, also associated with the matrix, will give a new layer of signification to the Park in its relation with spirituality. Lighting fixtures, sometimes linear and part of the major units, or just punctual when associated to areas where the matrix rarefaction as attained its maximum expression, will add a metaphorical and yet subtle layer of communication to the overall proposal. Seen from above at night, the Park will appear as a multitude of light pixels and lines that unify, in a conceptual way, these spaces and will constitute one major event in the city’s imagery. Light, always associated to illumination and truth since the beginning of times, will also play an important part in the Park’s capacity of relating the city with spirituality.