Social Urbanism Studio and Travel Intensive to Medellin, Colombia


Social Urbanism Studio and Travel Intensive
Medellin, Colombia
School of Landscape Architecture + Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana
Projected travel dates: August 9-18, 2015.
Contact: Maria Bellalta, Dean, School of Landscape Architecture

The BAC’s School of Landscape Architecture is gearing up for its Social Urbanism studio in Colombia!

In collaboration with the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana, Medellín, Colombia, the proposed trip is to take place for 10 days in August, 2015, followed by a fall, 2015 semester LA Studio on Social Urbanism. The UPB has generously offered to provide studio and lab space for the UPB and the BAC students to meet and present their work. The collaboration between the BAC’s School of Landscape Architecture and UPB students will continue during the semester via webinar international student presentations and design reviews.

Over the last decade, the City of Medellín has undertaken recognizable revitalization efforts that address the limitations to its socio-economic systems by maximizing high, cultural public spaces. Numerous fresh and modern civic plazas, public parks, and transit systems have been developed and renewed, which are opening up the City to make it more inviting and life-giving. An unusual transformation of the City’s physical resources, infrastructure and functions, has derived in a meaningful physical form and model for social urbanism.

The combined nature of the UPB’s structure, the acumen of the landscape architecture and architecture students in the UPB program, and the significance of Medellín as a center of urban renewal and social mobility, are the inspiration behind this travel intensive and studio proposal. The intent of the studio collaboration, moreover, is to expand the BAC’s LA students’ understanding for global conditions and contexts, including a milieu of natural, constructed, social and economic criteria affecting urban design, housing typologies, and sustainable applications today.

As a final product of the studio, the students will create a digital and hard copy publication to document their study and international collaboration. This documentation will serve as a learning resource for future urban design and planning efforts across geographies and cultures. This document will also present the BAC's School of Landscape Architecture’s urban and social focus and its relevance to the design of sustainable and livable environments, as particularly related to public housing and public urban spaces.