FUNdaMENTAL Design Build Initiative Team members: Sheryl Wadehra (India), Benjamin Hakimian (USA), Carmen Chee (USA), Li AnHong (China), Laurence Von Lignau (Haiti), Waddah Dridi (Tunisia), Serkan Ates (Turkey), Riccardo Zocche (Italy), Hrabrina Nikolova (Bulgaria), Florence Méthot (Canada) Local student participants: Andrei Seredin (Costa Rica), Diego Blanco (Costa Rica), Johana Vargas (Costa Rica), Valeria Murillo (Costa Rica), Kéndary Rojas (Costa Rica)
Parque O2 is the latest installation of the FUNdaMENTAL Design Build Initiative. The premise of FUNdaMENTAL is to invite early-career architects from around the world to work together over a three-month period to address real world problems at the intersection of design, community space, and social impact. They engage local, diverse communities and rely heavily on developing their understanding of cultural nuances, with guidance from local experts.
Parque O2, a sprawling public installation of colorful bamboo totems, recently opened in San José, Costa Rica’s Polideportivo Park. The project is the latest installment of the FUNdaMENTAL Design Build Initiative, an annual design-build project that invites early-career architects from around the world to work together over a three-month period to address real world problems at the intersection of design, community space, and social impact. Located at the intersection of San José’s public Polideportivo Park and the Rio Torres, the installation connects the highly complex topological, social, and environmental components of the site, which sits at the intersection of a contaminated urban waterway, an informal settlement, and a railway on one side, and an organic market and public green space on the other. Previously, the areas were nearly inaccessible to each other, dividing communities along both geographical and socioeconomic lines. Forging a spatial and visual connection between these diverse conditions, the participants undertook a series of physical and social actions to unify the disparate areas of the site. Removing trash, overgrowth, and intimidating security fencing, paired with outreach to neighborhood residents and stakeholders, helped to lay the groundwork for a design intervention with community support.