The legacy of marginal and unbuilt spaces, as a critical tool in the contemporary European City
“Become major, Paul. Live like a hero. That's what the classics teach us. Be a main character. Otherwise what is life for?” ― J.M. Coetzee In that sentence of the South African writer J.M.Coetzee, Paul the male protagonist chooses to become a major, which is the main character of the history, to live his life like a hero. He does not want to choose to be a soldier, but instead a major. Coetzee put us in this essence of our own mortality as human beings, he refers to the Classics as a return to the past as a place to go back and to learn from. And when Paul, thinks about his life he chooses to learn from the past and be the main character in the mirror of his own life, and the essence of the time in our own moment and time. Time as a concept connected to our own lives, you only get one chance at it. The meaning of the word legacy refers to “something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor, or from the past”. It poses some questions in that sense of what can the past and our ancestors teach us from our cities, what are the memories that we gather from this legacy and what is its current role in the infrastructure of our cities in Italy, in Europe. These spaces of legacy often abandoned, unused, empty in the city, in need of regeneration of a new role as a main infrastructure of the city in a global context, how can they be used as new urban visions and proposals for sustainable cities. This paper first starts from a theoretical proposition of trying to define these spaces in the European city. Developing from that definition secondly a reflection of how they can become resilient and investigate them in the context of the margins and the peripheries of our cities follows. And concluding with a way to make them part of an instrument of key metabolism to arrive at an understanding how cities can use this legacy in a positive manner as part of the city’s infrastructure. Like Paul the main character how we can make these places become the main characters in our cities’ infrastructure, so they become the legacy of tomorrow.
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Citation : Martinez Perez, A. (2019) The legacy of marginal and unbuilt spaces, as a critical tool in the contemporary European City. Abitare la Terra Dwelling on Earth rivista di geoarchitettura a magazine of geoarchitecture, Suplemento al numero 50 Anno XVIII 2019 Trimestrale, pp. 54-55.
ISBN : 9788849238235
Research Institute : Institute of Architecture
Peer Reviewed : Yes