paisajes de la memoria
The natural space of the Llobregat Delta has undergone many transformations throughout history and has been reduced by the expansion of the strong industrial landscape that surrounds it. The area remains the last stronghold where nature and the traditional work of the land resist the expansive and devouring character of industry and logistics. “Memories of a Landscape” proposes a path which core is a 19th century ruin and its rich natural environment; now in process of disappearance.
Thought as a fusion of three time spans, the path reveals the traces of the past in the territory that have been erased, connecting the visitor with the landscape and it’s unique character through a sensorial and revealing experience in communion with nature.
Finally, it opens a debate on the future of natural spaces and the consequences of a system obsessed with productivity, effectivity, technology and consumerism that forgets where we come from, altering the balance of the planet.
Designed with materials that totally respect the environment and accompanied by water as the main source of life, the path is divided into four different parts that refer to a specific past event of the point where they are located.
The intervention provides the place with new life through a completely sustainable intervention and reveals the opportunities that neglected territories can offer by becoming experiences and bringing more green areas to cities.
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Being a witness of the transformations that the landscape of the area has suffered along time and that still remain nowadays, this project acquires a critical character. It aims to draw attention to the contrast of such powerful and non compatible landscapes that coexist within the same kilometre.
Reflecting on the footprint that human beings leave on the planet as we exist, we should all be aware about how threatened is this unique natural area and how important is to work on a more sustainable approach where we understand the landscape.
Part 1: Recovering abandoned fields
The first part of the itinerary, recovers and combines in abandoned territories the wild vegetation with the traditional cultivation of El Prat.
Areas covered with wattle for resting along the walkway.
Beggining of the walkway through abandoned crops.
Trace of the walkway based on the shape of the 1956 crops.
Recovering traditional crops as a tribute to El Prat.
Walkway model and representation of the abandoned crops.
Part 2: The ruin
The main contribution in this section is the water, which runs through spaces and slopes. It rehydrates the arid ruin and turns the visit into a much more sensorial and pleasant experience, specially in the summer.
Entrance to the ruin. The channel becomes a furrow in the floor.
Symbolic representation of the old volumes with iron sticks.
Water furrow that goes through the old tank and the stairs until the sink.
Resting areas covered with wattle.
Recreation of the roof with wattle.
The sound follows us along the route, refilling the old sink where the women used to do their washing. The water now creates a wide pool that crosses from side to side the courtyard of the ruin.
The second intervention recreates the volumes of the old living spaces with iron rods.
Finally, some parts of the roofs are reconstructed using again the wattle as a traditional construction element of the environment. These covered areas enhance the existing dynamic effects of light and shadow and at the same time cooling the atmosphere in the hottest months.
Section of the ruin. Entrance from the first part (left), exit to the third part (right). The water fills the sink and falls towards the new pond.
Part 3: Footprints
This section recovers the traces of the riflemans that used to live in the building, recalling their long and repetitive surveillance rounds along the beach. After having crossed the ruin understood as an architectural element in decomposition, the line of the route, rests on the sand and breaks into terracotta steps of different sizes that together form a path. After walking along the beach, it crosses a water channel. In this route the visitor feels the sand and the water closer, remembering this link that the workers had with the ocean.
Footprint steps reaching the 4th part, towards the industrial area.
Footprint steps along the beach.
Part 3 crossing el Canal de la Bunyola.
Part 4: Raising awareness
Finally, the route leads us to a last high fence that acts as a viewpoint overlooking the industrial area of the city. After having passed by the other parts of the route, which represent the past of the area honoring it, the final part raises questions about a future that urgently needs to be answered from a clear environmental commitment.
Fences become higher as they get closer to the industrial area.
Final fence and structure. Inspired in the park's birdwatching points.
Areas of resting and vegetation between the fences.
Final fence; views to the industrial area (Zona Franca).
The fences increase as we approach the Zona Franca as fragile defensive walls. It generates a walk that somehow reminds us of a labyrinth that subtly guides us towards the end of the route. The visitor, walks freely between the fences, finds areas enabled for rest with benches and vegetation. The conceptually over dimensioned fence, is a metaphor to the bird watching viewpoints that are located in the natural park, inviting the visitor once again to reflect on the contrast of such powerful and non compatible landscapes that coexist within the same kilometre.