RC - Lisbon, Alfama XXI - A new centrality to the city

Short description: 

The city of Lisboa is perched on steep hills overlooking the broad estuary of the Tagus river. The tightly knit street pattern of Alfama constitutes one of the oldest boroughs of the city. It spreads from the castle - which crowns the medieval urban settlement - to the oldest stretch of the commercially developed shoreline.

The Municipality of Lisboa is presently developing an "integrated plan" which directly links the new cruise terminal - situated along the original stretch of the old merchant shoreline - to the surroundings of the historic boroughs of Baixa, Alfama and Castelo.
This "integrated operation" or urban requalification comprehends the rehabilitation of architectural heritage, safeguard of the environment, revitalization of commerce, reconversion of old pedestrian lanes and others.

Simultaneously with the aforementioned action plans, an on-going best practises pilot initiative is to be developed in Alfama with the objective to boost the quality of life in these old quarters of the city.
Under the motto "To reach a civic management with greater participation from community members through innovation" it is the intention of the municipal authorities to merge social, demographic and economic factors in the implementation of a variety of juxtaposed local interventions such as street lighting, public outdoors equipment, texturing and colouring of the buildings' façades.

Start date: 
01/02/2004
Implementation date: 
01/08/2004
Country: 
Portugal
Region: 
The municipality of Lisbon

Phase
planning

design

Scale

local

site

Type(s) of MILU

Interweaving: use of the same space for different functions.



Use of the fourth dimension of space, i.e. time.

Themes(s)

RED - the urban fabric and its infrastructure.

BLUE - water-systems and water related issues.
PARTNERS
Initiative:
The Municipality of Lisboa / Department of Strategic Planning
Planning and design:
As above + external consultancy to be appointed
Realisation:
Not yet determined

Lessons learned
ENHANCING SPATIAL QUALITY: Maximise the potential of the labyrinth of pedestrian lanes, winding public staircases and irregular squares. To upgrade the original characteristics of the buildings' façades and restore their traditional materials.

IDENTITY OF PLACE AND CONNECTIVITY: Top priority is the link between the borough riverfront strip (new maritime cruise terminal) and its adjacent inner area (oldest core of the capital, with roman and arabic surviving structures). This is to be emphasised in urban terms contradicting the increasing pressure of the main road along the riverfront which severs the original structure of the built core.

PLANNING AND IMPLEMENTATION PROCESS:
After a comprehensive preliminary study (2004-2005) for the neighbourhood in conjunction with the surrounding outlying boroughs, there will be phased implementation projects which main aim is public safety, due to the very closely knitted organic pattern of the narrow lanes and alleyways
.
HANDLING OPPOSING INTERESTS:
Increase in quality of environmental issues goes hand in hand with the implementation of future global sustainability which is closely linked to strict private vehicle access and a closed circuit of neighbourhood public transport run with ecologically friendly products (ie: gas or electricity).

INVOLVEMENT OF CITIZENS:
To turn dynamic the services of the local Citizens Municipal office mainly by attracting more local residents and traders to directly contribute with ideas and decisions in the urban development process.
The following services of he Municipality of Lisboa contribute on the following topics strictly related to the Borough of Alfama towards the Project “Alfama XXI”:


ADMINISTRATION AND ANIMATION OF CULTURAL SERVICES AND EQUIPMENTS:
Available cultural facilities; monitorization of cultural events; periodical local festivities.

M
(THE) ALFAMA (MUNICIPAL PROJECTS) UNIT:
location and characterization of large scale developments promoted by the Municipality or through private-public enterprises; and survey of existing and projected cultural, educational, social and sports equipments provided by the Municipality.


ASSOCIATION OF TOURISM / MUNICIPAL TOURISM:
Major tourist itineraries and pedestrian routes with heritage landmarks; most popular and coveted public leisure spaces and squares.


CULTURE:
Archeologic architecture open to public visits; existing cultural facilities and associations.


CULTURAL HERITAGE:
Inventory, classification of discrimination of listed buildings, monuments, sites and green areas; past intervention and present safeguard of the listed buildings, monuments, sites and green areas.


CIVIL PROTECTION; SAFETY AND TRAFFIC:
Vehicle traffic plans; network of pubic transports; monitorization of pedestrian circuits; survey of supplied services and implementation of services and alternatives by local residents.


ENVIRONMENT AND GREEN AREAS:
Location of all public green spaces and leisure areas with respective typologies; recent, current and projected upgrading of public green spaces and leisure areas; planting of flowers, greens and trees.


PUBLIC LIGHTING: Network of public and street lighting with specification of particular highlighting arrangements and displays.


(MUNICIPAL) URBAN STUDIES AND PROJECTS: Survey of implications and tipologies of municipal interventions in the borough’s pubic spaces.