location: Karlovac, HR
size: 25 ha
team: Marcin Maraszek, Maciej Kaufman, collaboration: Natalia Janek
status: shortlisted in competition, 2019
The abundance of water is a great wealth of the city of four rivers, but it easily becomes its cruse. In past decades, floods in Karlovac have been increasing in both intensity and frequency. In the face of a natural disaster, the community must show solidarity and ability to cooperate. An extreme condition can built certain social capital. We should build on that capital to create an innovative district, and city resilient to climate change.
Building a new district offers a great opportunity to rethink how we use resources (material and social), leading to entirely new ways of creating value. We must change the way urban systems are planned, designed, governed and financed, and how they are created, used, and repurposed.
Pooling is a concept derived from the field of economics: grouping together of resources (assets, equipment, personnel, effort) for the purposes of maximizing advantage or minimizing risk to the users. The aim of urban pooling is to deploy cooperative actions, practices, institutions, and ventures, to share existing urban resources, collaborate to generate new value.
Karlpooling is a proposal of a gradual transformation of Luščić barracks into a testing ground for experimental multifunctional district based on urban pooling and commoning. This long-term process must flow from bottom-up initiatives and be rooted in a strong sense of community of its residents and users: civic, public, cognitive and social.
In the context of Karlovac, rainwater can become another kind of resource. In the scale of a singular plot, it can only become a muddy puddle, a sewage waste. But if gathered from the neighborhood, it can become, after phytoremediation, a useful common resource: an irrigation for urban agriculture, or a pleasant common bathing pond.
New Luščić is penetrated by a network of common blue-green infrastructure – canals, rain gardens, storage reservoirs and hydrophyte ponds. The disclosure of the infrastructure not only makes it an attractive component of public spaces, contributes to biodiversity but also drews public attention to the problem of water security.
The project is an attempt to address the question of what a contemporary city can be. The context is extremely binding here: the ideal Renaissance city, which is old Karlovac. Unlike to an ancient fortress, Luščić has no singular patron or dominant purpose. It grows as a part of a larger entity. It interweaves with the existing urban tissue. Its spatial composition reflects its pluralism, a multitude of actors, participatory design and environmental consciousness.