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Resilient Coastal Leisure Environments

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Masters Research and Design Studio

Professor: Ivan Rupnik

Students: Megan Cusack, Duran Fernandez O’Brien, Daniel Forcier, Brett Hansson, Brad Pierce, Chris Slater, Alvin Sun, Michael Waring, Jessica Wilcock, Alysoun Wright

This fall, a section of the Masters Research Studio participated in the Estudo Comparativo para a Reabilitação Urbana PT_HR Algarve-Dalmácia [A Comparative Study of Urban Rehabilitation in the Algarve, Portugal and Dalmatia, Croatia], a research project on sustainable tourism coordinated by Ricardo Camacho and Prof. Ivan Rupnik and supported by a MSF/NeoCivil construction and development company through a program of the European Union. The project also included a collaboration with EUVG School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture in Coimbra, Portugal and the Spatial Planning and Development Office of the County of Zadar, Croatia.

With the economic crisis in Southern Europe, tourism has become a more important part of part of the local economies of Portugal and Croatia. This project seeks to develop new methods of analysis and design that can begin to address the following questions:

Can tourism development be channeled to rehabilitate derelict structures instead of expanding to new greenfield sites?

Can tourism development reinforce local economies such as agriculture, aquaculture and silviculture?

Can the massive transportation infrastructure development necessary for accommodating the short peak seasons in these countries be better conceived to support the local communities during the off season?

How can the rehabilitation of derelict tourism structures, the rural working landscape and transportation infrastructure lead to more resilient coastal leisure environments?

coastal2Stu­dents tour­ing the Ria For­mosa nau­ti­cal infrastructure

To better inform themselves of these issues students travelled through the Algarve region of Portugal and central Dalmatia in Croatia for 10 days during November of last year, with a group of Portuguese students from the EUVG University, guided in both places by local experts from various disciplines. Two Northeastern faculty with expertise in sustainable coastal development, Dan Adams and Marie Law Adams, also accompanied the group.

coastal1In Faro and Zadar, stu­dents pre­sented their work to local experts.

This semester the studio continues with students preparing a series of design proposals for the sites they visited in the fall. On March 13, a group of experts on sustainable tourism from Portugal, Croatia and Boston, including architects, landscape architects, urban planners, geographers, engineers, developers, and hotel management representatives, will meet at Northeastern to discuss these issues. On March 14 the provisional conclusions of that symposium, the work of the participants and students research will be presented at the BSA.