Greening the city – IAAC

April 7, 2010

THE SELF-SUFFICIENT CITY: Envisioning the habitat of the future was a recent open competition from IAAC (Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia). We have subsequently been invited to submit work for their upcoming book and  a 1 minute film as part of expo in CCCB. Below are the 3 A3 panels we submitted, click on each panel to view in PDF. Underrneath is a summary of the ideas examined. Our proposal was entitled:

Towards a healthier, happier, eco-effective Barcelona.

Greening the city, connecting communities, C2C city


PANEL 1 (1,76 MB)

PANEL 2 (1,06 MB)

PANEL 3 (2,98 MB)

150 word Summary –

Greening the city, connecting communities, C2C Barcelona

Create urban greenway / CPUL mesh

Develop more bikeways/ walkways to easily connect from within city centre to nature: rivers, sea, surrounding hills. Allow all abandoned spaces to become indefinite temporary gardens. Specify strategic zones as permanent community gardens, including within all existing public parks and schools. Connect these nodes by greenways. Turn greenways into CPULS (Continuous Productive Urban Landscapes), Plant fruit and nut trees, berry hedges, diverse vegetation, food. These bio threads allow nature into the city; butterflies, song birds, pollen. Use city roofspace(s) as one vast CPUL, solar energy harvest, water collection zone and new Public Park. As private car use diminishes turn old “car lanes” into “food lanes”. Create mixed use clusters around gardens, part of the urban fabric: play area, sport complex, café. Make spaces experimental, adaptable and open to everyone. Let all life adapt and grow.


CCCB Com serà l’hàbitat del futur? Demà, l’Any Cerdà Cerdà organitza el 3r Concurs d’Arquitectura Avançada. – 3r Concurs d’Arquitectura Avançada – Any Cerdà

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Patcha Mama smiles again in Gracia

October 27, 2008

The Gracia Community Garden Radio Documentary (28 mins)

Els espais buits no fan Gràcia : The empty spaces are not funny

So read the new banner that now hangs on the end wall of the new Hort Comunitari, or community garden in Catalan, that was opened in Gracia on Saturday morning. From just being another quite and dry street, theres now a hive of activity in Caller Banyoles; people, laughter, color, sounds, music, dancing, kids playing. Being there one knows that Patcha Mama smiles again in Gracia.

Well over a hundred people entered a site that had been left derelict for the last 5 years. The concrete ground was smashed apart and the soil underneath was broken open with pics, forks, spades and hoes. People arrived in with recycled large construction bags with soil inside, once inside these bags had young plants put into them and were watered.  that was lovely and brown and full of nutrientsdue to having horse manure mixed into it. Other soil was added to the freshly broken red earth and new plants were inserted here too. a large heap of soil at the end wall gave endless hours of healthy mucky enjoyment to kids who dug tunnells and rolled around, laughing and shrieking with delight as they did so.

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Transition Culture: radio shows about transition towns and more

October 16, 2008

The advent of Peak oil and solutions to it are perhaps one of the most critical issues we are facing today. A recent movement has exploded in Britain, transition towns. It began in Kinsale in Ireland with Rob Hopkins who set up the Permaculture college there. They set up the Kinsale Energy descent plan, looking at how their town could make the transition to less oil dependancy over a 20 year time frame. From there Rob went back to Witness in the UK and from there the model has exploded. You can find out whats going on on their WIKI (with translations) and they have set up a fantastic website Transition Culture.

Here is an excellent short video made by —- as part of the Lewes Transition town movement. It was shown in the local cinema of Lewes before all the films. It starts by asking the townspeople what are the causes of climate change and finishes with a rap about how oil is now used for the production of nearly everything we use

Rob Hopkins elaborates on the origins, the growth of and the future of the transition towns movement

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Towards a healthier, happier, eco-effective Barcelona

October 8, 2008

We, at EIG, recently proposed some BOLD ideas for how BCN might grow. We think these ideas are feasible and that many of them could be implemented immediately and cheaply. Apart from radically changing the eco performance of the city, we believe that they would hugely affect the livability of the city, and indeed enliven the very soul of this strange city.

We would like if you viewed the short PDF document, Towards a healthier, happier, eco-effective Barcelona of only 9 pages with many images and with that, should you agree with all or some of the proposals, give us suggestions as to how best we can realise these dreams.

Here are just 2 of the ideas proposed:

Vias Verdes BCN + Green Roof BCN

Vias Verdes BCN: greenway network for city of BCN

Ciutadella and her green routes: A series of organic root like threads come from BCN´s park, her green heart, and weave to and through the rest of the greenway network.

Parc de la Ciutadella is not only the cities strategically placed central green lung; it happens to make up one of the most deeply loaded parts of Barcelona’s, and indeed Catalunya’s, urban and social history. In short; it matters. From this much loved city space, and always connecting back to and through it, are the 3 ripples; a series of radiating greenways that form a simple orbital matrix, the spine of the network. This structure forms the organising system through which all future greenways routes (roots) weave, from within the city out to her sea, rivers and surrounding hills. And from there to the wider Euro and Global network…


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