FarmPark concept design in Prato, Source: Prato Municipality

Prato will boast the first urban jungle in the world

Prato will boast the first urban jungle in the world

Return to nature in a managed way

On 16 March, the City Council of Prato, in Tuscany, announced that it has approved the preliminary plans of a project (by PNAT), which seeks to create the first urban jungle area in the world, as reported by the municipal portal. This goes beyond simple urban greenification or forestation measures, which are now commonly known and used. The idea here will be to let greenery completely take over as many building surfaces and interbuilding spaces as possible in specific areas of high density.

Radical vision of urban landscape and design

It was reported that this large-scale initiative will have two main goals:

The first will be the transformation in terms of functionality of urban spaces and buildings which had been hitherto abandoned or underutilized, such as industrial parks, social housing, etc. The second will involve the creation of green hubs that will serve as a magnet to communities to carry out their leisure, sports, cultural and social lives there.

The sought-after result will be the rejuvenation of declining and marginalized areas and their conversion into new centres of sustainability and attraction. As is well known, plants help reduce atmospheric pollutants, restore the soil and lower temperature in the so-called heat islands during summer.

The Urban Jungle project will affect three areas of Prato, as an initial experiment.

The first will be the ESTRA private building, which overlooks the busiest public street with daily passage of 50,000 vehicles. The second space will be a building in a social housing complex, consisting of 152 apartments and about 500 residents, known for its socially marginalized status. And third will be a building on via Giordano in the historical district of the city near the Macrolotto Creative District, another project of urban redevelopment nearby.

It is expected that this will bring about more creativity in design solutions, more commitment by residents to their immediate environment and a stronger resilience for the city.

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