white waters

The Landscape Design studio explored landscape architectural strategies for the Fiume Carrione, a short river in Tuscany, which flows from the Carrara marble extraction basins, through the City of Carrara to the Mediterranean Sea.

Landscape Design Studio
Politecnico di Milano 
Professors: Sara Protasoni, Hope Strode
Role: Teaching Assistant, together with Giulia Cazzaniga
Student work shown, by:  Lixuan Zhu, Xueting Lyu, Zeija Fang

Studio Program

The river is contaminated by ‘marmettola’, a fine particle marble dust produced as a result of the recent developments in extraction techniques, which renders the river bottom impermeable, thus threatening habitat for many plant and animal species and increasing the flow-rate of the river. As a result of the contamination and the shrinking of the river channel due to poorly planned infrastructure and industrial expansion, the river has experienced five unprecedented floods since 2003 which have caused significant damage to the cities of Carrara and to Marina di Carrara at the estuary. 

Landscape strategies addressed water contamination and loss of biodiversity, flooding, and channeling of the riverbed.
The studio seeked to study the 20 km length of the river, focusing particularly on the urban sections, to provide viable possibilities for the re-qualification of the floodplain.

Project Description

The project works on the river edge, to create a new public space for the neighboring communities and the city.
Working on the topography of the river edge using marble and other local stones, the site transformed into: viewing and relaxing spaces, vegetable cultivation areas, as well as outdoor exhibition spaces. This way the project works with the history of the marble industry, while restoring the river ecosystem.

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