Urban Reforestation

Rethink Athens Competition entry, 2012

Philippos Photiadis with: Ask Architects

rta-web13-dgr1-640Urbanization has displaced nature, locking natural ground – earth – in pockets contained by hard surfaces. Athens lacks parks, but most urgently, it lacks green infrastructure in public spaces, the vast majority of which are asphalt paved streets. We use the site as the initiator for reversing the “locked nature” symptom, by bringing fragments of wild forest into the city to cohabit with urban complexity, in order to enrich quality of life and to revive the center of Athens.

Reforestation process: Action 1: Peeling the asphalt layer and hard surfaces off the streetscape to expose underlying ground.| Action 2: Bringing a strip of wild forest in the city to initiate the process of urban reforestation. | Action 3: Negotiating between existing urban elements and the introduced forest strip.

A continuous cast concrete element concentrates all necessary grey infrastructure. It acts as a river that defines tram territory and irrigates the forest to make it sustainable.


Design Team: Alexandra Stratou, Stella Konstantinidis, Philippos Photiadis | Project Team: Leonidas Kalpaxidis, Konstantinos Kosmas , Xenia Touratzidi, Kira Papanikolaou, Pezhman Rahmatkhah


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