Victor Civita Park, or How to Turn an Old Incinerating Plant into a Sleek Public Space in Sao Paulo

Victor Civita Park in Sao Paulo Photo

Opening parks and open spaces in cities usually brings nothing but good to communities. Now what if not only you bring a park, but you also 'take away' a polluted venue and turn it into a sleek architectural space, all in the astonishing period of one year? This is the basic story of the Victor Civita Park in Sao Paulo, Brazil's largest city.

Find out more about the project, including how the architects worked their way to make a highly contaminated soil a safe place for people.

The Victor Civita Park in Sao Paulo

According to La Nacion newspaper, this project is a first for Brazil in terms of recovering a highly polluted and abandoned urban space into a public beautiful environment.

The park was designed by Levisky Architects and Anna Dietzsch, and was built with a partnership between Sao Paulo's Mayorship and Abril Group (the largest and most powerful publishing house in the country). It is part of a program announced in 2008 to add 100 new parks to 96 districts in the city.

Victor Civita Park in Sao Paulo Photo

The process of hiring and building lasted only an amazing one year, which is extremely short for an architecture project of this kind.

An old incinerating plant venue, the soil of the site where the park is was very polluted, and the short period of time estimated for the project didn't allow the recovering of the land with traditional methods.

The solution was the implementation of a wood deck elevated 90 centimeters from the ground with recycled metal structures. This 'runway' goes right through the park in a diagonal line to draw a long walkable route.

Victor Civita Park in Sao Paulo Photo

Elevated from the ground, the floor protects people from polluted areas.

Closed to the sides by vertical panels, the path has areas that were filled with new land to the sides, where new and old trees from the old venue coexist.

In the center of the park there's an open amphitheater and the old building where the incinerating plant worked was recycled into a 'Sustainability Museum'. The park is not only a visual attraction, but also has a rich cultural and educational program around sustainability concepts.

Victor Civita Park in Sao Paulo Photo

An aerial view of the park, where you can see the amphitheater and facilities.
Victor Civita Park in Sao Paulo Photo

A night view.

If you're in Sao Paulo and want to visit this place, it's located in the neighborhood of Pinheiros. Here's the exact location:

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For more info, visit the place's website (in Portuguese).

Victor Civita Park

Via La Nacion
More on recovering public spaces:
High Line in New York City
Guerrilla Gardening

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