In this competition, Eleven challenged creatives to design a 21st century River Renaissance for Rome through a rediscovery of its legendary river by turning the Tiber into a contemporary catalyst for change.
Winner – TIBER LIVING LAB by Shengyu Huang, Chen Mengtong, Wu Wenhao and Wei Lifeng (China)
Modular spaces are created through pod-like stackable structures which reference the arch – a quintessential Roman invention – as it’s defining aesthetic. ‘Tiber Living Lab’ adds vibrancy to the area through the use of mixed-use facilities, amenities controlled by techy-apps, a new infrastructure of transport, and a financial strategy designed to benefit both tourist and resident. All this is packaged into an attractive presentation.
Runner-Up – ACQUA ROMA by Melissa Shin (USA)
If you can’t bring the Romans to the river, then bring the river to the Romans! Acqua Roma imagines Rome in the year 2062, as a city where ancient treasures come to life in renewed, water-based activities for the people to immerse themselves in. Acqua Roma seeks to imagine a future Rome, where the addition of a fluid urban layer serves as a catalyst for the city to reinvent itself.
People’s Choice Award – REFOUNDING TIBER by Abdur Raoof Khan, Saman Imran, Fatima Urooj and Devesh Mani Tripathi (India)
The design proposes a new bridge for Rome with the intention of also bridging the past and future. The bridge incorporates a bath complex to allow Romans and tourists to enjoy the waters of the river. The idea, in turn, is a nod to the ancient Roman bathhouses: an important element of socialisation for citizens of all classes, wealth and status.
Honourable Mention – ELEVATING THE RIVERFRONT by Vonn Weisenberger and Julia Brooks (USA)
The sunken walkways which coast the river are rendered more accessible by lifting them on par with the urban level. These are made attractive by the use of flowerbeds, reeds and trees. But what makes this entry so captivating is the way in which water is turned into the main design protagonist through the creation of a wall of waterfalls, designed to shield the high river walls, purify the river and mask pedestrians from the frantic Lungotevere traffic noise.
Honourable Mention – VEHICULUM FLUVIUM by Sergio Bianchi, Simone Fracasso and Simone Russo (Italy)
An artificial river is created, allowing for the Tevere’s tidal waters to be redirected and thus saving the city from future violent floods. Meanwhile, the old river gets given back to both man and nature through the creation of a soft verge turned park and the tunnelling of current primary traffic arteries. A new form of transport is introduced through the engineering of a monorail system, designed to make the city more accessible.
Honourable Mention – PROCESSION OF ARCHES by Charlotte Loustalot and Roman Joliy (France)
This beautifully rendered concept delivers a strong proposal through the use of poetry defined by minimal architectural rhythm. Poetic places are created from the existing anonymous river’s edge by the introduction of reinterpreted arches which are allowed to age with time. The arches become the mechanism of visually and spatially breaking down the soul-less walls of the river by introducing a human scale to them.
Honourable Mention – TIBER TWO by Jacqui Stacey and Cameron Stevenson (Australia)
There is a discontinuity between the urban city level and the river’s edge, rendered worse by the imposing flood walls which line the Tiber. ‘Tiber Two’ wishes to comment on this discontinuity by creating a new space for the city to enjoy. The result is an aquatic piazza on the river that unites the city through water, whilst simultaneously showing the discontinuity of levels between river and city.
Honourable Mention – TO SWIM THE TIBER by Andrew Kwok and David Majoe (UK)
Water – we have seen – was a very important element for Rome throughout the centuries. Perhaps the best example of this can be found in the ancient Roman concept of public bath houses. ‘To Swim the Tiber’ reintroduced this concept, by creating a contemporary bath house in the Tiber River to act as a catalyst for interaction, river production and water purifier.
Honourable Mention – ISOLE DELL’ANIMA by Lena Wimmer, Basel Hamad, Sebastian Gubernatis and Iris Huneau (Germany)
‘Isole dell’Anima’ (translated as ‘the islands of the soul’) imagines a new role for the river through the creation of artificial island in the Tiber. The islands create a peaceful place where someone can isolate themselves in nature at the heart of the bustling city: a fluvial park or, perhaps most fitting, what we can only describe as an urban-water-oasis-cluster. Through a handy app, the islands can be accessed by self-driving water-taxis, allowing the Tiber to also double up as a new artery for the movement of its population.
Source and images, Courtesy of Eleven.