Meeting space for urban pedagogy
La Habana, Cuba
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Location:
La Habana, Cuba
Category:
meeting place
Phase:
under construction
Updated:
17 October 2021
The pilot project uses new methodological tools, which allow addressing actions on public space, from co-production with the community, using the gender perspective and social inclusion as axes of the transformation process. Where economic, environmental, social and cultural sustainability will be fortified from an alliance between the public and private sector, allowing a social and solidarity economy that contributes to the co-development.
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Introduction
This project is developed within the framework of the implementation process of new economic reforms in the country. Which seek to articulate and diversify the different economic actors, through alliances between the public and private sectors. As a strategy, the local government makes available to self-employed workers, the leasing of different spaces, most of them obsolete, to generate economic activation, and insert dynamic projects. In this case, a complementary gastronomic activity will be incorporated into the public space that will allow from the social responsibility of this economic activity and involving social actors and local leaders, as well as the population, to transform into THREE PHASES (Activation, Planning and Implementation) the object in a participatory and progressive way. For this, 18 variables grouped into 4 groups (Image, Vitality, Safety and Accessibility) are evaluated.
In the current Cuban context, the independent professional practice of architecture is not authorized. At the same time, there is a legal vacuum that prevents the self-employed worker from contracting the urban architectural project to the socialist state enterprise. However, under terms of mutual agreement, we as a team managed to carry out a counseling that allows the development of the intervention strategy, accompanied by a group of actions necessary for the transformation process of this public space.
Children's play area

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Impact
This transformation process will allow it to serve as a pilot and demonstrative project in terms of methodologies and the use of the necessary tools to be able to address public space.  From a vision of tactical urbanism, where public space is transformed based on the needs of the user and the community, and not on aesthetic and functional criteria.

It is an inclusive process, with a gender focus, that applies techniques to understand the needs of both male and female roles in this type of public space.

It allows to develop continuous exercises of urban pedagogy with the demonstration of concepts such as renaturation, as well as the reuse of water and solid waste produced in this space.

At least 100 women of different age groups participate in workshops, exchange meetings and in the planning process.

The entire community around this space (10,000 people), in a radius of 300 meters, will have a new public, accessible, vital and playful space.

Different elements that today structure the park are recycled, giving them new meanings based on new needs.

This particular case will serve to demonstrate that the independent practice of urban and architectural design in Cuba must be authorized to become an ally, allowing the achievement of the SDGs and to implement the economic and social development strategies that the country's leadership has proposed to the 2030.
sdgs
Core team
The project has been approved by the Agreement No. 725/20 of Plaza de la Revolución municipal administration council, which authorizes the ¨Activation of Public Space¨ in the area of "Parque Calzada". It is promoted by the mayor Fidel Ernesto Hernandez Arias, as one of the prioritized alliances to demonstrate the articulation between different economic actors (public-private). The project has also been promoted by TCP Oscar Enrique Mendía Veliz.
The representatives of the community are the community of neighbors, the president of the CDR (committee for the defense of the revolution) Julio Marchant and the delegate of the district and also a national deputy: Magda Ileana Pérez Matos.
The technical team is led by the architects of Ad Urbis, Kiovet Sánchez and Samuel Puente. The first is the deputy director of the Old Havana Master Plan, who has experience in these participatory work processes with the community. The participatory task will be facilitated independently by the sociologist Maydolys Iglesias, she is the main specialist of the international R&D and innovation of the Old Havana Master Plan. For the re-naturalization and landscape process, JL Landscape will collaborate with us, lead by the architects Julio Martínez and Laritsa Castillo, the last one is the director of Horticulture  of the national botanical garden.
The epidemiological situation has been critical in the last year. It has not been possible to advance in the work with the community, but the first meetings have been held with the president of the CDR and the Delegate of the neighborhood.
Phase 0 diagram

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Image gallery
Current state of main access

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Current state of the garden area

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Children's play area

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Technical drawings
Analysis of current areas of public space

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Analysis of current areas of public space

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Activation of the public space with light gastronomic service

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Phase 0 actions

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Public space in the city

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Elevation by Calzada street

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Elevation by F street

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Corner view

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Interior space protected by living shade

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Water treatment system

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Help bring our project to life!
17 October 2021
The candies arrived
After restoring and enabling the containers off site since April. Last September we were finally able to take them to the park. Several weeks of work and thanks to the skills of our blacksmith Gerardo and also to Oscar's management, we were able to complete this stage of the project obtaining new knowledge.
Help bring our project to life!
Where are we now
We propose a progressive schedule of actions, where we strategically allocate the initial project budget to the activation of the public space, and with the benefits generated from this activation process carry out small, concrete and necessary actions defined by the community. 

We are in Phase 0 (executing the activation actions of the containers)

List of tasks

The purchase of the containers | Done
General repair and preparation of containers | Work in progress
Container infrastructure installation | Work in progress
Container foundation works | Done
Container service equipment | Done
General infrastructure | Work in progress
An indication of our team’s capacity:
50% funding already raised
100% expertise already found
70% materials / equipment already found
100% builders already found
Finance: € 3,000
Funding is required for:

1st. The necessary logistics  in the preparation of at least 5 workshops (participatory process) will include material for surveys, printing of informational banners and activities with children. 

2nd. Construction of the water reuse system. This will be a key element for pedagogy and its greatest impact will be reflected in the sustainability of the maintenance of the new green infrastructure. 
  • workshop
  • 600
  • Grease traps
  • 100
  • Septic tank
  • 600
  • Bio-garden
  • 400
  • Rainwater tank
  • 600
  • Rainwater pumping system
  • 400
  • Drainage and technical infrastructure
  • 300
    Help bring our project to life!
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