Europan 13 : Molfetta
Architect: Elements Archlab
Client: Europan
Status: Competition (2015)
Clasification: 2 prize
Location: Molfetta, Italy
Coordinates: 41.205642, 16.599049
Climate: Mediterranean, Temperate
Material: Stone
Environments: Old town, Seaside
Visualizer: Studio
Scale: 120.000 ㎡ Extralarge
Types: Masterplan, Public space

Molfetta is a city that has always been linked to the sea, with a coastline marked by the relationship between its different uses with the water (harbors, shipyards, promenades, bathing areas, etc). Any proposal to improve this space must be oriented to preserve or restore the identity of the place and give the city back to citizens.

Due to its proximity to Bari, the project enhances Molfetta as a touristic spot of the Italian coast, linking the city to the Adriatic through a soft filter made of walkways, platforms and small buildings.

The project is the regeneration and creation of a new promenade in order to get back the identity of the city.

The current relationship between the land and the sea, as well as the high traffic density and the poor parking organization, have transformed the coastal landscape of Molfetta in a variety of promenades unrelated to the historical identity and tectonics of the city.

The proposal enhances the waterfront by adding activities in the most representative points of the promenade and decentralizing parking lots from the historical center of Molfetta, reorganizing it along the entire promenade. To do so, we suggest an express bus line which connects Prima Cala with Madonna dei Martiri square.

The proposal focuses on the areas between the edge of the sea and the city: a limit with two very different attitudes taking into account the relationship between the water and the stroll. On one hand, the eastern boundary is directly open to the Adriatic Sea, where two levels of promenades are proposed and the project works from the section, trying to link the water level with the one from the city. On the other hand, the western waterfront, where the limit is within the harbor area, is conceived with a single level.

Various nodes of activity are identified in relation to the surroundings and local needs. Molfetta’s historical center, which is visible from the whole promenade, is understood as the main node. This offers spectacular views along the already mentioned promenade and reminds us the origin and identity of Molfetta.

Several problems and opportunities are identified throughout the waterfront. Such problems are vacant spaces and/or abandoned buildings, walking discontinuities, vehicles priorities over citizens and completely inactivated areas.

Eastern promenade

The eastern part of the promenade (from Prima Cala to the old city center) is focused on the walks, the entertainment and the leisure of citizens. It is compounded by two levels: the upper one (at the city level) and the lower one (at the sea level). In this section we suggest to create bathing and picnic spaces, areas for fishermen and a group of services that invite pedestrians to walk along the entire promenade. We are talking about a ride accompanied by singular elements along all its length: the benches. The space they take up allows us to get rid of the handrails and to provide both resting and dynamic areas inside the promenade.

In a second plane, we create a vegetable sieve that makes it possible to blur the newest facades, but always protecting the ones considered as historical heritage of the city.

Western promenade

The western stretch of boardwalk (Banchina San Domenico to Madonna dei Martiri) has a more commercial character and more direct contact with the sea. Unlike the eastern section, the platform is characterized by a single constant and wider level. In this section, the existing facilities are expanded and new spaces for citizens are created. The linear bench disappears from the boundary between the sea promenades and creates a much smoother transition where the floor and the stands are the highlights. In this section the plant sieve appears in small groups combined with various activities of the ride.

Team: Carles Esquerra, Gabriel Casals, Ferran Viladomat, Barbara Piona, Josep Ninou, Luis Julio Pareda | Post date: 24/02/2016 | Views: 4.088