From a landfill to Vergel in the desert. Parque Esmeralda is located in the piedmont of Copiapó city, Northern Chile. The Park is in one of the last peripheral social housing developments on the north side of this town, at the border with the Atacama Desert.
In its origins, the land where the project was built was part of a small stream, but for more than 40 years it was filled with garbage and rubble. In this context, residents of the Esmeralda population –made up of more than 300 vulnerable families– had a historical desire to transform and recover this landfill into a meeting space that would become the heart of the neighborhood. This was the center of the Esmeralda Project: to give its neighbors a green and habitable space that since its construction in the 80s did not have any facilities or public recreation areas.
在沙漠和山坡上，在极端贫困的边缘地区实施绿色。该项目的起源是深入研究 “城市花园 “的想法，一个在沙漠中的绿色场所，它可以缓解和共存于阿塔卡马地区极其干旱的环境中，该地区以世界上最干旱的沙漠而闻名。但是，实现一个高度缺水且位于脆弱地区的公共空间是一个巨大的挑战。我们扪心自问： 我们如何能用最少的绿化面积产生最大的绿色感知？因此，设计的先锋是致力于绿色视觉视角的策略，这意味着不仅要观察公园的土地，还要观察邻居们每天经过的周围通道。我们还意识到，许多通道的尽头是停车场，这引发了一个建议，即在街道与公园的视觉交汇处战略性地设置丛林。通过这种方式，每个邻居将获得一个植被区作为他们通道的视觉终点，而不是现有的不健康的垃圾堆。
Implementing green in the desert and on slopes, in a periphery of extreme poverty. The origin of the project consisted in delving into the idea of an “urban garden”, a green place in the desert, which could mitigate and coexist in the extremely arid environment of the Atacama Region, globally known for being the driest desert in the world. But achieving a public space with high water scarcity and located in a vulnerable sector was a tremendous challenge. We interrogated ourselves: How can we generate the greatest amount of green perception with the least amount of green area? Thus, the spearhead of the design consisted in working on a strategy of green visual perspectives, which implied observing not only the park’s land but also the surrounding passages where the neighbors pass daily. We also realized that numerous passages end in the parking area, which triggered a proposal to strategically locate groves at the visual intersection of the streets with the park. In this way, each neighbor would obtain a vegetated area as a visual finish for their passage, instead of the existing unhealthy pile of garbage.
Inside these groves, the project contemplates accessible circulations, small meeting places, and community gardens, which finally unite two neighborhoods that were divided for decades since they were separated by the landfill.
In this way, the park is composed of a delicate social and ecological fabric between zones of high vegetation cover, intermediate zones of lower vegetation, orchards, and more exposed programmatic zones (with pavements). With this strategy large heat islands are avoided, always trying to be “surrounded by the green”.
In the longitudinal direction and given the steep slope (42m of unevenness), the park is projected based on terraces with rocks from local stonemasons, which give rise to multiple viewpoints of the Copiapo Valley.
This is a process of a series of workshops with the neighbors during the design stage, and then the construction of green areas and stone walls.
Architects: CAW Arquitectos
Area: 215278 ft²
Manufacturers: Arauco, Cintac, Schréder, Urban Play
Associated Architect: Juan Pablo Cacciuttolo
Collaborating Architect: Francoise De Saintpierre
Counterpart Minvu: María Paz Larenas
Counterpart Serviu: Wildo León Díaz, Carolina Egaña Vargas
Arquitecto Autor: Rodrigo Werner
Program: Urban equipment