Valparaiso is a city located on the coastline of Pacific Ocean.During the period of 500 years there where 8 serious earthquakes which destroyed the city. It is a dynamic city which inhabitants developed the skill to rebuilt the city from ashes and move on.
Valparaiso is a city of port and it was blooming in 19th century as a cultural and economical centre before Panama Canal opening.
In 2003 Valparaiso became a UNESCO listed city. Due to the implementation of a Neo-liberal urban model, the city is divided in two zones: plane and hills. The hills concentrated all disadvantaged communities -slums- and they are highly vulnerable to manned disasters like wildfires and informal landfills too.
The major access of Pacific Ocean coastline in Valparaiso is occupied either by military or port purposes allowing only 300m of public access.
City view from water front.
Complex and challenging topography to inhabit.
STUDIO POP & PLAN CERRO SIGNS COLLABORATION AGREEMENT
STUDIO POP set up a collaboration agreement with an NGO in Valparaiso (Chile) called Plan Cerro www.plancerro.cl to assist them with EU development programmes mainly in the fields of trans-disciplinary knowledge exchange cooperation and network, visions and game plans, and mitigation and adaptation after man-made disasters and endangered eco-systems like "cerros-barrios".
We also have met and talked to Waldo Burgos the president of local community who works on projects to improve neighborhoods and people well being. In the picture below you can see a steel structure occupying vacant site. A proposal is to install a site container which function addresses community needs. While walking in the Parque Cultural de Valparaíso we anticipated that local people enjoy and intensely use public space . Any emerging public space project has a huge potential of success.
Creative way to enhance public space by using colored bottle caps mosaic.
THE CITY OF ELEVATORS
During its economical peak in 19th century Valparaiso used to have 31 elevators to connect hill inhabitants with flat port area. However, Panama Canal opening caused people migration from the city and economical shrinkage reducing elevator number to 14. These wooden boxes going almost 90 degrees slope is a truly authentic experience of Valparaiso and costing only 300 Chilean Pesos.
THE CITY AS PAINTING
It is a paradise for any street art lover. You can be lost for hours following wonderful masterpieces on walls. Combination of colorful corrugated metal cladding and paintings creates a vivid and playful image of Valparaiso.
Its a good example of how good street art benefits positively environment. LET'S PAINT THE STREETS!!!!