We understand that the answer to the questions raised in Cigarreras, due to their diversity and complexity, does not go so much through the construction of a result but rather through the definition of a series of conditions to initiate a process, as François Ascher proposed in The New Principles of Urbanism (2004). In this sense, we are talking about a Middle-Out process, which we will call Cigarreras LAB. In it, Top-Down and Bottom-Up strategies are intermixed, which allow us to think of a horizontal approach with a diversity of mediating figures that constantly renegotiate the processes.
In line with the expert Richard Florida, we understand that to create an authentic ecosystem of innovation, the intervention must establish the ideal conditions for different agents, institutions, companies, associations, etc. (local, national and international) to exchange information and knowledge, generating creative and innovative synergies. However, Cigarreras LAB intends to shift the idea of place, as a localized cluster, towards the idea of spatialities defended by the sociologist and urban planner Manuel Tironi. In this regard, we should think of Cigarreras within a reciprocal relationship with the city of Alicante, in general, and with its neighborhood-environment, in particular; in which not only both entities act simultaneously but also provide feedback. In other words, we understand that Cigarreras LAB must also be an incubator for public and private uses (whether cultural, tertiary, social, etc.) that will end up, after a programmed period, settling in different parts of the nearby urban fabric. Its ultimate goal is the environmental, social and economic rehabilitation of the adjacent neighborhoods.
It is for this reason that it is proposed that interventions within Cigarreras (both in their protected historical buildings and in the free spaces between them) should be accompanied by other recommended actions in different strategic locations of EDUSI neighborhoods. Again, it is about thinking Cigarreras in relation to their need with their environment, which forces, on the other hand, to rethink the delimitation of the 4 proposed phases so that they maximize the urban performativity of the intervention.
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