Water is Alive

8th June 2015

WIA_C

Latitude, with CZstudio and ETC Engineering srl , just won the first prize ex-aequo at “Water is Alive, la depurazione come risorsa”, a design competition promoted by the water utility Verbano S.p.a on Lago Maggiore, North of Italy. The call looked for innovative ideas on the dismantling and recovering of two wastewater treatment plants and the up-scaling of a third one, located on the urbanized cost and valleys of the alpine lake. The need to provide prototypical solutions for similar contexts led to pay particular attention to the recurring geomorphologic conditions of the area and the human transformations which enabled a variety of water uses over time.

The proposal moves from the consciousness of how water is today often a denied territorial feature: its infrastructure is hidden and its underlying processes are “forgotten”. Nevertheless, water management has a direct impact on the urban and natural dynamics. Focusing on these processes it means to grasp the inherent potential of the infrastructure and space of water, making them real organizational structure of the territory. Through technological upgrading and water sensitive management practices, the infrastructural renovation becomes the opportunity of open the “black box” toward leisure and didactic activities, emphasizing the relationship of the wastewater plants with the territory and their role for a renewed culture of water.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Plus
  • LinkedIn

Tags > , , , , ,

Ugly Spots / results

13th December 2011

Through an extended survey along inhabitants of the Kortrijk region, Leiedal mapped 120 so called ‘Ugly Spots’ in the urban environment. Ten sites were selected and ten design teams were asked to propose a creative intervention for two or three sites. With this project, Leiedal wants to stimulate creative interventions in distorted public spaces.

Latitude – together with Gijs Van Vaerenbergh – was selected to work on the courtyard of the community center of Terhand – Wervik and on the town square of Spiere. Both projects were selected by the jury and recommended to the local municipality.

Ter Hand ( in the picture above) is a ribbon structured hamlet in the Wervik region. A morphological and programmatorical analysis shows how most (small scale) public activities are generically inserted in the stretched undefined space between the road and the private properties. We propose a sequence of local interventions to derive and strengthen existing identity defining elements from the ribbon. The site is one of the four strategic locations with a public importance to the ribbon. We propose a new ground canvas that runs from the community building, across its courtyard to the other side of the street. In this way – together with two new openings in the existing wall – this wall divides a new public space instead of hiding one. A light canopy structure follows the diagonal axis of the wall and accentuates the spatiality of the courtyard. The canopy has mirror symmetry to respond to different activities on both sides of the wall and becomes a landmark in the ribbon structured hamlet.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Plus
  • LinkedIn

Tags > ,

New NMR / Nairobi Metropolitan Region

18th October 2011

Latitude is happy for its collaboration (urban design and graphic design) to the new version of the NMR report.

“This report, “Nairobi Metropolitan Region: Networking the Sustainable African Metropolis: Issues, Visions, Concepts”, was developed in response to the first International Planning Competition in Nairobi’s history.  In the fall of 2008, eager to gather new ideas, the Ministry of Nairobi Metropolitan Development put out a call for proposals for a “spatial planning concept” for the Nairobi Metropolitan Region.

This report is the result of a collaboration spanning three continents, three universities and three firms. It was initiated and spearheaded by seasoned Kenyan experts- former Director of Physical Planning, Mr. Renson Mbagwa, prof. Dr. Lawrence Esho and Edwin Wamukaya (Center for Urban and Regional Planning, Nairobi); prof. Dr. Peter Ngau, prof. Dr. Isaac Mwangi, Dr. Charles Karisa and Lecturer Margaret Ng’ayu (Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Nairobi).  They brought on board prof. Ms.Sc./Ms.Urb-Pl.  Jef Van den Broeck, prof. Dr. Han Verschure, prof. Dr. Andre Loeckx, prof. dr. Frank Moulaert, prof. Dr. Bruno de Meulder, Dr. Fabio Vanin (Latitude) and PhD students Bruce Githua and Margaret Macharia (Department of Architecture, Urbanism and Planning (ASRO) of the University of Leuven (KUL); prof. Dr Elliott Sclar, Dr. Jacqueline Klopp and Nicole Volavka-Close (Center for Sustainable Urban Development, Columbia University); Paul Wuillaume, Filip Lagiewka, Guy Vloebergh, Koen Vande Sompele (OMGEVING, Belgium); and Véronique Wouters, Daan Vantassel and Lieve de Cock (Euro Immo Star, Belgium), planners, architects and engineers.

In July of 2009, the Ministry invited eight of the nineteen teams that responded to their request to submit proposals. We were one of the eight selected teams.  This competition and the challenge it presented created a unique opportunity to dialogue on the future of the Nairobi Metropolitan Region, a dynamic and diverse area ranging from an economically powerful urban core, fuelled by local entrepreneurial and intellectual that ceremony the Ministry announced that our international consortium was selected as first runner up, just three points behind the winning team: the Delhi-based Consulting Engineering Services (I) Pvt. Ltd.

We are honored and delighted to have participated in this historic planning competition and will continue to promote more active and open dialogue on metropolitan issues within Nairobi and its surrounding cities. As part of this effort we present a slightly revised version of the spatial concept submitted for the competition. We hope it will enrich and provoke continued policy discussion on and support action for making the Nairobi Metropolitan Region a sustainable, democratic, prosperous and uniquely African metropolis.”

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Plus
  • LinkedIn

Lelijke Plekjes – Ugly Spots

1st August 2011

Latitude – together with Gijs Van Vaerenbergh – was selected for the project Lelijke Plekjes (‘Ugly Spots’).

Through an extended survey along inhabitants of the Kortrijk region, Dijledal mapped 120 so called ‘Ugly Spots’ in the urban environment. Ten sites were selected for the project and ten design teams were asked to propose a creative intervention for two sites.

Latitude will work on the courtyard of the community centre of Terhand – Wervik and on the townsquare of Spiere.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Plus
  • LinkedIn