the picnic project
Status: Architectural Competition / Public Power Corporation (PPC)
Program: Regeneration & re-use of former lignite quarry in West Macedonia
Location: Ptolemaida, Greece
Architects: Leonidas Papalampropoulos, Georgia Syriopoulou
The design focuses on issues of re-appropriation of nature in the post-industrial era through the implementation of the program "Picnic Project" in the northwest lignite mining area of Ptolemaida.
In this new condition the subject confronts a previous traumatic experience either by resorting to the repression of the trauma through a phasing out of memory, or by turning its interest towards an acceptance and management procedure. The second condition, which is adopted in the design, can be associated with the re-instatement of the romantic subject (as the bearer of idealized feelings part of which are trauma and desire), and the new relationship that it develops towards the landscape.
Wider area management
The project contemplates on the issue of a phenomenology of land use, towards the enrichment of knowledge on the allocation, use and perception of the country's territory.
The design proposes the formation of a new archaeological site inside the former quarry through the exhibition of industrial artifacts that re-formulate the romantic quest for the habitation of the ruin, not just as an object of observation but also as an active component of the land's productivity with the parallel development of agricultural activities along the industrial tourism.
THE PICNIC PROJECT SCHEME
The project develops upon the regeneration of the stream in order to create a new interactive cultural landscape for the implementation of the program.
Three dams are constructed along the stream that control its flow and form three water reservoirs for swimming during summer, while a hydrobiotope is allowed to develop. Two parallel paths (pedestrian, bike road) along the stream connect it with the surrounding area.
INTERVENTIONS - WORKSHOPS
Micro-interventions are allocated along the water path that refer both to the surrounding villages and the wider area and aim at the re-appropriation of the natural environment.
They derive from a norm that produces hybrid structures attempting to cope with the trauma in the new condition.
This norm consists of a process of transformation of a function according to one of three proposed techniques-workshops, thus constructing a dynamic environment of possibilities that is co-formed by the locals and activates the region's social and economic life.
TECHNIQUE #1 - GREENHOUSE
This technique exploits the existing remote heating infrastructure and the ability of the greenhouse to fuse agricultural and recreational functions by proposing the construction of a greenhouse-swimming pool (Tropicana) between the two villages in order to create a hyper regional magnet that introduces a new take on water recreation.
TECHNIQUE #2 - GRAFTING
It introduces the formation of habitation infrastructures through the process of grafting and shaping arrangements of trees into uniform structures. This grafting architecture is proposed for the formation of botanical rooms but it can also produce a multitude of other objects.
TECHNIQUE #3 - outdoor living
It introduces the creation of open air urban residential environments (living-dining room, tv room, wifi, kitchen etc) in spots along the water path.