After launching in 2012, the La Spezia Arsenale 2062 competition finally revealed the winning entries. First built in 1857 by Napoleon and after it was destroyed during World War II, La Spezia Arsenale in the city of La Spezia, Italy hosted warships before it gradually became neglected.
Wenext and Murati Vivi di Marola thus established the open ideas competition during the Florence Liquid.Lab Festival to ask designers worldwide on how to renovate and reintegrate the arsenale to its city.
The competition jury awarded the following entries:
- 1st place: "Peace Island" by Günay Erdem and Sunay Erdem of Erdem Architects (Turkey)
- 2nd place: "Arsenale la Spezia 2062" by Gijs Braakman (The Netherlands)
- 3rd place: "Open Spaces" by Francesco Bellotto (Italy)
Although Wenext and Murati Vivi di Marola's intention was to award the 1st place winners a weekend vacation to the Gulf of La Spezia, but the plan was unfortunately unsuccessful.
Scroll down further to see the winning proposal.
"'Although wars continue around the world, La Speazia has had no functionality for a long time. Sooner or later, peace will prevail. We considered that La Spezia could be a symbol of this. We designated a very simple idea, and decided to transform the area, well-known for its military reputation, into peace islands representing the peace itself' said Sunay Erdem, speaking to WA."
Günay Erdem summed up the project in similar terms: “The arsenal harbour gets a new lease of life after being transformed into three peace islands: The first island is a place of agoras, cafes, restaurants, cinemas, pubs and bookstores where people socialize, not make war. The second island is a zoo island with animals representing peace. And the third island is a place where plants, the most representative of a peaceful life, grow."
"Architecturally, La Spazia Arsenale might become the first on earth to transform itself from an area of war into a beautiful and fruitful area of a peaceful life. Assuming the area to regain its functionality in 2062, with an entirely peaceful perspective and landscape, this is going to be the success of Turkish architects at the end of the 21st century. It is the first time Erdem Architects has won a contest in Italy, and they already have 47 awards in similar contests across the globe."
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