The Piers Project moves from the theme of accessibility in the specific context of Rome urbanized area to develop an open and dialogued strategy of landscape design devices. This strategy is part of the wider “Rome beyond GRA” research study; and the co-design laboratory Corviale has been the very first practical application.
The urbanized areas of contemporary Rome are very different from the past decades established peripheries. It is a space made of few, low quality materials that are repeated extensively, discontinuous and patchy, but also populated by large and small gaps of high environmental and landscapes values that allow to imagine a social and ecological rehabilitation of these territories.
The Piers stand as a new modality of designing for the ecological and social rehabilitation of unused, underused or misused areas. This allows to give shape to a new imaginary of metropolitan accessibility through interventions that, at the same time, enhance the valuable elements of a metropolitan area(large green areas, relationships with agriculture, open-air lifestyle, etc.), and underplay the negative ones(long commuting distances, lack of collective identity, general sense of insecurity, etc.).
The conceptual backbone of the Piers moves from the one of a Green Infrastructure as a design tool able to cultivate in an innovative way the resilience of the big metropolitan areas. The varied meanings of the term resilience easily reassume the innovation potentials of a “green metropolis”.
The Open spaces, in fact, allow us to cultivate the more tangible characteristics of resilience such as sturdiness, redundance, and reliability (e.g. the hydro-geomorphological risk assessment or guaranteeing cycle and pedestrian accesses and routes are way more achievable in non-built environments). Nevertheless they also make possible to reinforce those resilience parameters which are referred to local communities, that are attributable to flexibility that is the capability to digest changes on the base of new data or experiences, especially those regarding economical or social activities; to initiative, which is the ability to reach goals of economical dynamism and development outlooks through new and innovative ways; to inclusion, meant as the capability to get involved heterogeneous ensembles of people and places; and last but not least integration, defined as the custom to develop common goals making sure of coordinating the efforts.