Colina Creativa en Tafalera/ Creative Hill in Tafalera, Elda, Alicante (2009)
Landscape design could be used as a potent tool to solve some of the most striking social conflicts affecting our contemporary cities. Segregated areas because of their physical, social, economical or cultural condition can be approached through specific landscape strategies in order to smooth or dissolve these conflicts into all embracing green public grounds. In fact, the particular ability of landscape to permeate and pervade different realities in a totally informal way is especially relevant when dealing with socially and physically fragmented marginalized areas. However, landscape design cannot be understood as an isolated tool to solve the complex panel of tensions appearing in some of our cities. In order to be fruitful, landscape design has to be activated by social practices.
The importance of the landscape design is then its particular ability to act as a soft host discipline able to include different economical, urban, environmental and architectural approaches. Programmatic, infraestructural, spatial and relational aspects mostly related to the disciplines of architecture and urabnism have to be complementary to the landscape design seeking its activation.
The Creative Hill in Tafalera relies on the notion of Creative City in order to activate this landscape. The notion of creative city trusts that living and productivity conditions in cities may be improved by participation and exchange between its individuals. Questions of scale needed to facilitate this exchange, forms of association, mixability of uses, reassesment of the local values, are of key importance. Towards the fullmiment of this activation, the development Tafalera as a creative cluster follows three different but interconnected tactics: to identify and trace a hierarchical system of green public spaces; to increase density to achieve the critical mass which allows urbanity, and to reprogramme the hill using the existing industries as a catalyzer. In short, this proposal aims to reactivate a socially degraded area through tightening, programming and articulated a system of public green spaces.