2) Cristina Andreea Pavelescu, Raluca Baco a Stefania Madalina Irimiea, Romania
STRATEGY FOR DEVELOPMENT
NATIONAL, REGIONAL LEVEL
Self-sufficient system of thematic tourism, ecological agriculture (crops and animals), gardening and fruit production, residential programs (accommodation)
The first step in the development of the area is to increase the desirability of that place. To make the region attractive, desirable and livable, we have to consider what the users (tourists, local permanent residents, occasional residents-owners of vacation residencies) want and to develop it according to their needs. This also has to be made, in a first step of development, with minimum financial effort, but maximum creative and strategic effort, to give the kick start and allowing the creation of a budget for future development. Each settlement must have a role in the region, being complementary and forming a self-sufficient system, where all of the roles are assigned according to the strengths and opportunities of each village and city and to the needs of each place. The goal is to have a well-balanced development, without any disparities, so we don’t overdevelop some areas, while others are left behind.
The settlements in the close vicinity can serve as a source of System of ecological agriculture and harvesting fruits and vegetables
There is a lost tradition of growing a large variety of fruits, vegetables, crops and farm keeping, which we want to revive. The goal is to organize a system consisting of lands of harvesting, centers of depositing and collecting and distributing them to the other settlements, in special markets of local products. By doing this, the population of the region will always have fresh, healthy food, grown locally, at affordable prices (local grown food will cut on the transportation and depositing price). In time, a brand of the region can be created and start distributing goods globally, also strengthening the local brand. We can also include in this system of local goods things like: manufacturing traditional goods, local arts and crafts goods, local art, local gastronomy, local music and performance.
The development of the agriculture must not extend excesivly not to disrupt the landscape.
A strategy of village branding is not efficient for such a small intervention and hasn’t enough power to help the development and not enough resources and elements of value that can be exploited in creating a symbol- brand, with the symbol of Vyskovice as a starting point for the brand. This is why it is more suitable to create a place branding strategy for the whole area that has a common element and binds all of the villages: a series of villages with their own touristic and cultural characteristics, but with common traits: border villages with former German occupants, with an accent on tourism, sporting, leisure and nature activities, with cultural and bike trails that bind them together.
Having to chose from a huge variety of alternatives, in a globalised world and informational era where the whole world is at the tip of our finger, it is crucial to build a solid strong brand that can show the strengths of the area: virgin lands of extreme beauty waiting to be discovered and explored, rich culture revealed to the tourist in unconventional creative ways, a diverse dynamic and multicultural community that interacts with all the participants in the scene of the area. Once the first tourist come, they become the message carriers of a place they enjoyed and will recommend to others.
The first interventions and actions are minimal, to give a kick start to the development.
Action seed – (notion first introduced by Titus Spree) refers to small interventions to raise consciousness and to provoke reactions, to get the visitors to think about their environment in a new way, like planting a seed in their minds.
First the area becomes known to a relative small target community, that of people with the following common interests: they love nature, sports, biking, unique quiet landscapes, history and European culture. To attract these people, there are two levels of intervention:
- At a regional or national level through branding
- At a local level by offering an infrastructure for practicing sports and leisure, exploring natural landscapes. This can be done with small scale interventions action seed or by organizing events: Sporting or leisure activities (triathlon biking competitions etc) it is also necessary to plan and design routes and rest points using materials that respect the nature and characteristics of the place and enhance the view and the landscape.
Other activities of interest can include:
Discover Vyskovice – Quest – an adventure competition that adresses tourists, adventure seekers and locals- multicultural teams are assigned to quests that make them adventure areas that are usually left over, but are of great beauty and potential – Online platform for discovering, following the traces of other explorers, enabling people to build relationships between places and to associate stories, information, pictures, sounds and videos with them. It provided the basis for a series of engagements with actual communities.
Exposing found traces, documenting them with the help of an online platform – Smart App for discovery and reinventing the space we find and give it a new meaning- „combining mobile and internet technologies with geographic information systems, people can ‘author’ the environment around them; creating a new social anthropology”
Tracing genealogies, adventures, games – for the German population interested in finding traces of their family that lived in the Sudetenland, but also for other people interested in history and culture.
By this activities we are creating creating a network and a bridge between cultures and communities.
In order to achieve a balanced development and tight knit community, the needs of each of the actors involved in the making of the new community need to be answered: the existing population, of the people interested to invest (future and existing investors), tourists (existing and potential), the people interested in having holiday residencies, the former occupants of the territories: the expelled German population or their families, (which should have a say in the development of their HEIMAT).
Many of the needs and requirements of different kind of communities can be fulfilled by the simple interaction and exchange of culture and experience between cultures and communities. This involves finding and answering to the needs of the population (stable and temporal):
Economic needs – In the larger context the relations between settlements are directed by economic needs, each elements having assigned a role in the system of self-sufficient development. Chodova Plana still plays a key role in the development and it should remain the city – attractor, offering most of the workplaces, accommodation and public services for the territory and being more accessible than the rest of the villages. But we can see that new points of interest emerge, that can relieve the pressure on the bigger cities and create their own nucleuses of development. We thus see that the former village of Vyskovice plays an important role in the development of the area close by and in generating new relationships and new settlements.
Social needs – The population of the area has little contact with others, this is why social contact is important. Also, tourists and people visiting feel the need to interact with local population, to better feel a place through the people that inhabit it. So the interaction between the two kinds of communities is beneficial for both parts.
Cultural needs can be achieved through the simple interaction between cultures.
We want to intrude in the natural process of development as little as possible, so we think that the villages and cities that foster accommodation units should be located where there is already a tradition in tourism and accommodation. In time new accommodation units will appear naturally, not as part of a forced and unnatural process. They should also be located near tourist attractions existing and proposed, that have no such accommodation nearby (like Vyskovice and Domaslavicky).
Because of the attractiveness of the area, consisting of beautiful landscapes, waterscapes, bio-corridors, we propose a system of biking and hiking trails, bike-sharing centers where (that will encourage discovering the region by wheel) and observation towers.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DEVELOPMENT MODEL
In an area of abandoned villages, the settlements that still have traces of an old life, the phantom villages, can become the center of interest and the engine for development. They are the only ones that can sustain a development because they can be seen as a starting point, something you can relate to, a context. Being void of physical content but full of symbolical and cultural content, the two settlements, Vyskovice and Domaslavicky present a freedom of interventions, offering a playful and creative way to find solutions for designing the space. They create an interactive environment that invites the visitors to discover and explore. The wild, natural areas near these settlements have a more active approach, with interventions from the communities of artists, creating a natural landscape with art interventions. The one common thing between these two cultural landscape is the tourist with a passion for biking, culture and nature. He strolls throughput these panoramas, taking with him impressions and bringing them to others, participating in the creating of the brand.
Types of Communities living together and sharing experience- multiculturality as an engine for development
As we come closer to the scale of the area surrounding Vyskovicce, the model of development is more in tune with nature and nature related activities and communities:
This part of the Czech Republic has had, over the course of time a mixed population, with its own identity depending regime and demographics of the time. The territory is perceived as a mixture of cultures that lived there and left their mark. The current cultural landscape is comprised of the synergetic influences of different generations. So the style and characteristics of the area are hard to pin down, making it difficult to find a gene code for the area with its unique cultural landscape. Therefore the intention is to attribute to the area a gene code of experimental approach: experimental communities, interactive/experimental settlements, experimental activities, experimental land art.
The community of artists
The role of the artist is to give to the population and to the region a work of value that can last either a short or a long period of time, depending on the artist, the time they have, the financing (if they are volunteers or paid by different organizations interested in the development of the area). The goal is to integrate the artists in the existing community so they can learn more about the people and create a work of art that relates to the people and their history and environment. It is preferred that the artists are living among the inhabitants of the area, so there can be a cultural exchange. The economy of the area can benefit, because in the time they stay there they bring money to the population and consume local products, strengthening and promoting the local brand. They can also be promoters of agrotourism, living in the households of locals and taking part in their life, bringing them one step closer to having a wider, holistic understanding of their culture. The work of art they leave behind will in time be a great touristic attraction worldwide.
Artists become transmitters, offering through their work a further reason to visit the area, contributing again to contouring and forming the local and even national brand. Nature, local values and local community become a visit card and art becomes the means of transmission.
The community can provide a better understanding of the place , the history, culture and Context. The temporal communities can come with the expertise for each field and can offer new innovative solutions to age old problems. This is a situation from which both can benefit the find new solutions adapted to context and thus enrich their area of expertise and methodology. The community benefits by being offers a better living environment, a high quality of life and they find new creative ways to fix problems. They also might look at their cultural and natural heritage in a new light.
Communities with preoccupations towards protecting the environment and local values and serving as examples of good practices in sustainable development. The aim is to work with the local community and plant seeds of good intentions in order to establish a system of sustainable development of the area, in close connection with nature and by enhancing the values of the landscape. A method for achieving this goal is by creating events where specialists, volunteers and NGO’s come and interact with the locals in a cultural exchange meant to understand the specificities of the cultural and natural landscape of the area and to propose actions for making the best of the existing values. The areas of interest that will induce measures of preservation and study can be: conservation and rehabilitation of architectural heritage, rediscovering ethnological and ethnographical values and putting them to use, protection of nature.
Community of bike and nature lovers – tourists- chosing their own paths- invitation to discover, to explore
PSICHOGEOGRAPHIC BYKE MAP- the tourist choses its own way
OFFICIAL BIKE TRAILS – competition byke trails
– diverse activities that raise awareness of the natural and cultural environment around you
– attentive to senses and emotions as they relate to place and environment
INTERACTIVE COMMUNITY – PSYCHOGEOGRAPHY AS A TOOL TO DISCOVER PHANTOM VILLAGES AND FORGOTTEN LANDSCAPES IN THE AREA SURROUNDING WYSKOVICE (PILOT PROJECT)
Psihogeography – “The lost ART of WALKING”- WANDERLUST “the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behavior of individuals.”- Guy Debord. We, as humans are great data collection devices, using sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch to provide us with data about our environment.
The objective is to make a psychogeographic map of the place, where you can follow the path of the passerby. Another aspect of interest is the interaction between the characters, the material (nature and land art objects that they encounter – cultural landscape) and spiritual world of the place (history, traces and bits of information discovered on site – phantom city).
The psychogeographic map can analyze the choices of the visitors, represented differently on the map, in order to create a mental map of positive and negative perceptions of the place. We can see which are the places that induce positive feelings to the viewer, by the act of positioning the chairs.
By mapping the place from the point of view of the “characters”, we can draw the basis for a map of zones and trails of a high intensity, materialized through trails and interest points, that will be marked with an intervention, the placement of an oversized chair that will highlight the point of interest and offer a general view over the landscape. This type of intervention will offer a new type of planning and designing, where the visitor/the explorer/“character” is involved and he gives the main direction over the development of the land art installation.
Objectives – Understanding of the place and the psychological effects it has on visitors and people who use the place. This interpretation can be useful for other places of interest, that have a rich history and beautiful landscape that could develop new interventions based on the psychogeographic map. Vyskovice thus becomes a pilot project for this type of intervention.
The landscape of Vyskovice and its reading, resembling the process of derive can be seen as an adventure experience, like embarking on a quest and discovering the story that the place reveals to us.
LAND ART INTERVENTION
The intervention is trying to be the least intrusive and meet the current state of space – recaptured by nature but at the same time preserving traces and clues – intriguing elements – of human existence in these coordinates.
These series of interventions is meant to be discreet, subtle and not compete with existing landscape in a brutal way.
In this direction were proposed two types of interventions: placing new objects in key points of the site and interventions on existing elements.
The proposed new items are designed to make information visible – history, present, information about the project (object 1 – the informative pavilion), highlight it in context, to direct in a subtle manner, to possible points of interest (object 2 – the acces panel and the pavement).
The interventions on existing elements involve putting them into value by restoration operations / repair either by simple cleaning and maintenance activities to areas where they are placed.
The proposed role of objects is dynamic, by actively trying to involve the visitors in to discover their own landscape. It is a study method and direct interrogation of values and attractiveness of the landscape of the area.
The first object was placed on the past location of the school from several reasons:
- a symbolic value – the school: a place for learning about past, present and future
- a visible position – close to the road and in the proximity of the main visible traces of the past – the chapel and the cellars.
- the configuration of the site (contour lines)
In the whole context this object represents a starting point for every visitor first experience with the site, where one will get enough information to start exploring. The expo panels and the floor of the object represents a connector between past (information about the history of the site and the lost communities), present (the existing natural resources) and future (the object itself represents an invitation to connect to the landscape, recommended both present and future visitors of the site).
The insertion could be interpreted first as an outsider, hidden or visible from different angles of perception, which develops, as you get closer, into an invitation and a starting point for your personal adventure in the landscape.
The scenery of the lost communities combined with the speciffic lines of the landscape could become an incubator for the future interaction with this area.
You can read it as an open space towards the landscape and one of the last witnesses of the past – the chapel, but also you can interpret it also as a temporary private space among the trees, a friendly interface between the individual and nature.
This informal place for learning also represents a “bank for chairs”. In other words we designed it not only as an information point, but also as an invitation expressed in one chair, challenging the visitor (both tourists and locals) to explore and leave a temporary trace in the landscape.
When we chose the chair we considered it to be a common object in one person’s life and by using it we wanted to benefit from the contrast between the object itself and the context, by making visible the connections established between the visitor and the landscape.
We are thinking that the best way to introduce and communicate our concept and main ideas is to involve both locals and external visitors in the process of creating the land art intervention, if they are willing to take part of our exercise.
The final purpose of this exercise is to create a dynamic scenery that could become in time an instrument for learning and observing the possible interactions between the potential visitors and the landscape.
The exercise could be repeated several times to observe different arrangements of the chairs in the landscape (lines of chairs, isolated or concentrated chairs, depending on the configuration of the land or special points of interest discovered on the site: ex fruit trees). Eventually some focus areas of the visitors will be revealed and used further in the process of understanding the landscape.
After analyzing the landscape’s characteristics, an exterior screen claded with ordinary sticks was chosen in order to receed into the surrounding nature without competing with it.
In these semitransparent walls two void frames were provided to offer views of the landscape beyond.
The wooden sticks temper the bright light and spread it evenly throughout the space to provide an interesting ambience.
The object blends into the landscape through the delicate choice of materials and the placement of these screens. We decided to use familiar textures in a way that it can easily disappear between the natural screens.
Structure (see the details attached)
These screens are basically some wooden frames anchored in the ground (in order to obtain a longer lasting object) which represents the support for the wooden sticks fixed on both sides of the frame. This module repeats along the ramp and the landing.
The arranging and fixing the wooden sticks will be inspired from the natural existing screens
existing natural screens (trees) → proposed wall texture – wooden sticks
Materials: wood, colour – white, treated for humidity resistance
Number of chairs: 50
The chairs could have more impact being executed by the local carpenter.
The object is placed at the beginning of your journey in the village. Explore! This was the key word and the base of our intervention, which we decided to include as an important message in our proposal.
We used the same wall module as for object 1.
In order to obtain visible results an event could be useful so that 50 individuals have the opportunity to mark the beginning of their dialogue with the landscape.