* Article written by Arenas Basabe Palacios
Final approval of planning ‘Wildgarten’ completes a five-year process of collaborative planning and development of the winning project of the international competition Europan 10 in Vienna.
The competition proposes the development of area of 10 hectares (approx. 1000 dwellings) residential fabric in a suburban area (Emil Behring-Web, Meidling, Vienna). The project created a collective pattern for individual interpretation: a matrix of gardens that structure the area, and can be built around the garden, not inside. Various actors (from large companies to cooperatives and individuals) can colonize these ‘extrovert plots’, promoting diversity and scale of urban building connections.
The definition of the gardens as a support matrix or game board allows an open design planning negotiation. To do this, a multidisciplinary team of technical experts in local architecture, urban planning, mobility, sociology, management, landscape and energy was formed. Each expert, through thematic workshops, contributed their specific knowledge applied to trace project basis.
But the planning is not only defined by technical: we understand the collaborative planning as an open process where all actors have a place: the City of Vienna, landowners, developers, cooperatives and public participated in design workshops, being active part of the collaborative process, each with their own interests, abilities and needs.
As an example of innovative, democratic and sustainable process, the project was awarded the 2014 Holcim Award Bronze in the European region. For presentation to the Global Holcim Awards comics ‘The Commons’ was developed: the history of the collaborative process from competition proposal, its evolution as a collective design and final approval of the City of Vienna, all guided by the real characters who have been active during the five years of work (2010-2015).