The long way around
Claudia Caneva - Manchester Metropolitan University
Daniel Bishop - Manchester Metropolitan University
Ana Delia Muñoz Camona - Universidad de Granada
The unique characteristics and location of the site, on the North part of the Arsenale, outside the historical Walls and the sites relationship to the surrounding urban conditions formed the founding principles of the design concept. The brief outlined the need for the introduction of new temporary and permanent housing, integrating the different cultural and research functions of the area, alongside development of circulation patterns, to create new potential pedestrian crossings, connections and the organization of open spaces.
The design focused on redeveloping and reviving the abandoned green spaces between the Arsenale Wall and the new residential development facing the Lagoon. The existing housing blocks where modified and new volumes where introduced, in order to suggest a new system of circulation scheme. The main goal of the new circulation scheme was that of connecting the 3 different areas of the site and their respective user groups with a new large public park accessed from all sides.
The housing blocks are re-organized to accommodate a variety of smaller temporary accommodation and larger permanent housing, with access and shared private courtyard spaces between the blocks. An elevated natural park was then placed between the new development and the Arsenale wall providing a new perspective from which to view the Venetian lagoon from the north of the Islands.
Through the creation of two public piazzas at the new east and west entrances to the site the proposal connects the various user groups within an attractive and natural environment. The entrances where created to connect the site with the Thetis and Biennale sites that surround it to encourage interaction between these groups. To define these areas a new tower was created to provide a landmark that visibly connects the site to its immediate context.