Minidoc - ECObox - self-managed eco-urban network

Self-managed collective space in metropolitan context

Author atelier architecture autogeree

France, Paris, Paris 18°, quartier La Chapelle

Authors aaa team (Constantin Petcou, Doina Petrescu, Denis Favret, Giovanni Piovene)

Self-managed collective space in metropolitan context

Strengths: Ecobox was a politically emancipatory experience for the inhabitants involved in the project who learned how to negotiate space for collective use in the city. It was emancipatory for us too, who learned that, as architects, we don’t need a client, a budget and a site to practice architecture but could rely on our condition of citizens and create nomadic space through ‘urban tactics’. Ecobox is an example of emerging social sustainability through temporary and reversible use of space.

Difficulties: Even if very positive, the initiation of this project was a very intense undertaking, asking for a large amount of time and energy. It is not something that somebody could carry on with for a long time. For this reason, the process of the transfer of management of the project was crucial. The evolution of such a project can’t be planned in advance because it really depends on who participates in it. As a real democratic space, the project was the locus of differences and conflicts.

Extra information: aaa has initiated a network of self-managed projects in the La Chapelle area by encouraging residents to get access to and transform temporary underused spaces. This strategy valorises a reversible use of space and aims to preserve urban biodiversity by encouraging the co-existence of a wide range of living practices. ECObox, the catalyser of this rhizomatic agency, has been extended into a platform for urban criticism and creativity, curated by the aaa members and currently by local residents.

Urbaninform

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