Sep 18, 2013

Parc Natural Văcăreşti - Pelle Backman



În primăvară am cunoscut un grup de profesori și studenți ai facultății de arhitectură din Stockholm. Ei au ales ca destinaţie a excursiei de studiu Bucureştiul. Astfel am avut ocazia să vizităm împreună Groapa Văcăreşti. În ciuda frigului și a ploii am discutat pe lung importanţa biodiversităţii in cadrul urban.

Ca urmare, Pelle Backman ne-a scris câteva gânduri care ilustrează foarte frumos calităţiile locului.




A DIFFERENT SPECIES

All places have their monuments, their Eiffel Tower or pyramid. Bucharest has the Casa Poporului. Lake Văcăreşti is another kind of monument. It also has a more modest operating budget.
Lake Văcăreşti is not really a lake. It was supposed to become one in the early eighties along with other mastodont schemes of that era. A concrete and soil perimeter wall some five km around was built to close the 180 hectares and the entire neighbourhood inside and a 16th century monastery was demolished. The project faltered – leakage lead to flooding of the surrounding areas and the whole idea was abandoned. Seemingly the city was left with a big void. 
In the meantime a slow metamorphosis begun. The lake attempt turned the area into a wetland. Largely undisturbed by human activity, it could transform into a haven for a rich and diverse wildlife. The area is now a thriving and stable ecosystem of its own and home to some ninety species of birds as well as foxes and ferrets, otters and other animals. 
New constructions are often based on discovery, on the ability to recognize what lies in front of you. Inventions rarely come straight out of an inventors mind. The beauty of Văcăreşti lake project is that it already is there for us to enjoy. It is a gift to the city.An incredibly intricate ecosystem has already been created. What needs to be done is to understand this and protect it from destruction. 
Although full of reconquered nature and wildlife the site is unmistakably urban. The concrete boundary heightens the impact of what it holds inside. It fits marvelously into a forward-looking citys future. As land art it is already a masterpiece.
When you step down from the edge of the concrete, you exit one world and enter another. Here and there, traces of somebodys garden, brick walls and foundations can be found. The resulting landscape is both eerie and beautiful – a sort of Mad Max meets David Attenborough. It is a new breed - a typology of its own, it is wild in the truest sense of the word. It is a ruin containing other ruins overgrown with true wilderness. This is the place to watch rare birds but it is also the place to watch ourselves, what we have done and imagine what we are able to do. 
I hope with all my heart that this unique and magnificent place may be kept like it is and allowed to grow and live as a part of Bucharest through all coming economic ideas and political systems.

Pelle Backman
Lecturer at KTH Royal Institute of Technology,
School of Architecture and the Built Environment





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