The city of children | New play spaces
Competition of ideas for the redevelopment of ten urban peripheral areas.
Proposal for the former slaughterhouse in Bisceglie.
The project is based mainly on two basic ideas: on the one hand, to recover the existing main building; on the other, to establish new relations between the latter and the empty space that surrounds it.
Currently the area is occupied not exclusively by the main building, once used as a public slaughterhouse, but even by a series of other buildings, which show scarce architectural value. Therefore, the intervention provides for a "cleaning up" of the area, assuming the recovery of the main building and its enhancement.
Typologically, the building is similar to a basilica, clearly showing in plan and elevation the spatial relationship between the central nave and the side aisles; however, the main entrance is not placed on the longitudinal axis, but on the transverse axis.
The recognition of the type and the suggestion aroused by it led to the idea of redistributing the new functions inside and outside the building, favouring the longitudinal sense of the plant. Therefore, the new entrance is located on one of the short sides of the building, taking advantage of the large existing opening, surmounted by a round arch. On the opposite side, however, the old superset is replaced by a new volume that accentuates the directionality of the interior space of the building, echoing a basilic apse.
The central nave will host a large area for children's play, while in the side aisles there are services and classrooms for educational activities.
The new connection between the pre-existing building and the external space is based on the relationships between the dimensions of the buildings. An orthogonal net is thus created to define the rules, marking a sequence of bands parallel to the longitudinal direction of the nineteenth-century building.
This mesh has been modulated for longitudinal strips, sized according to the correspondence with the wall structure and the width of the naves of the old building.
On this scheme that redraws the ground of the outdoor play area, all the elements useful for the new destination of the area are inserted. Among these elements there are staggered sequences of slender metal structure pergolas, which offer shelter from the sun and incorporate a variety of simple games for children: for example, the upper crosspieces of the iron frames become the support of swings; to the uprights there are backrests for climbing children. Moreover, at the pergolas, the diffused flooring in industrial cement changes and becomes a continuous synthetic rubber covering of different colours.
The narrower bands, on the other hand, generate linear concrete benches, design changes for the paving and further elements in elevation, like walls equipped for play.
The relationship between the new geometries that draw the ground and the structure of the old building appears even more readable in the space in front of the new entrance: in front of the façade, which clearly reflects the internal space of the central nave with a gabled roof, and the side aisles with a flat roof, a space for outdoor events and events has been set up.
The new entrance, created in the imposing pre-existing opening, gives the façade an unprecedented depth that increases the perception of the building's mass.