Rosario Territorial Front

This is the way the world endsNot with a bang but a whimper.T.S. Eliot, \”The Hollow Men\” (1925)Latin-American cities, especially those of Indian Laws foundation, do not end but dissolve. Starting from a consolidated urban void, the never-ending grid spreads the increasingly low-density urban tissue until it fades away into the rural. In the Argentinean Pampa\’s, the flat abstract landscape accentuates this impression of dissolution. Jorge Luis Borges spoke of the horizontal vertigo the open field, that is the landscape that enters the city bringing fragments of horizon to the linear perspectives of our long streets. It is not that the city dissolves into the Pampas; it is that the Pampas enters the city, on empty lots, on urban gardens, on interstitial parks.The westward urban border of the city of Rosario, Argentina provides one the best case studies for this condition. Bracketed by two small rivers marking the north and south limits of the city, the site for this studio has been newly defined by the Urban Plan Rosario 2007-2017 as the New Strategic Territorial Front. Full of complex conditions, the site offers a compelling laboratory for urban experimentation, and the chance to define new responsibilities regarding the new and varied scales at which we must operate today. We want to engage our practices with one of the most pressing issues facing contemporary designers: the relationship between natural environments and processes of urbanization.This studio will ground the projects in reality; our interventions will address the environmental, economic and social processes currently at play. The projects will acquire material, spatial and programmatic specificity, incorporating notions of regulations, remediation techniques, developmental demands, management tactics and construction technologies. This is our chance to influence the agenda of the next 20 years of metropolitan planning: by avoiding oppositions between environmental and infrastructural systems we will open new perspectives and take full responsibility in the intrinsic makeability of the urban.