MAC - Monteruscello Agro City
“Urban poverty should be fought regenerating urban spaces in peripheral districts, turning them into economic development. We want to do it fostering the creation of job and skills from agriculture.”
The MAC project seeks to reduce urban poverty in the neighborhood of Monteruscello, where poverty is understood in the social and economic sense and within the physical environment. The proposal is designed to trigger a process of economic, entrepreneurial, and social development, together with the improving of the urban environment.
Monteruscello is a new large public housing district with 20,000 residents with low-income, a high level of unemployment, and characterised by large unused spaces. Problematic social conditions are combined with a difficult urban environment, in particular for the character of emptiness, anonymity, and decay of the common spaces.
30 hectares of Municipal open areas will be transformed into farmland, developed with the innovative techniques of permaculture in order to spearhead an economic process and urban growth as a means to combat poverty. The project will have three pillars: implementation of agriculture through innovative permaculture; improvement of the urban environment; and encouragement of entrepreneurship and employment.
The goal of the proposal is to focus on the following issues: a) residents’ poor economic conditions - low income and unemployment; b) poor economy - lack of business activities; c) large abandoned green areas (a series of areas within the district for a total of 50 hectares) and unused public buildings; d) lack of activities, exchange and relationship; e) lack of quality relationships and trust between the citizens and the administration. From here the need to create work opportunities, enhance the economy and improve the environment.
The MAC project will:
- put in action a strategy coordinated from a new Agro-Urban Point, which will increase the City role in the neighbourhood, also involving the residents through a strong communication action with public events;
- transform 30 hectares of unused areas through the implementation of innovative agriculture with the permaculture approach;
- promote work in the area and develop new skills: the innovative permaculture approach will give opportunity to non-expert workers, including unemployed, all gathered in a new Cooperative which will be an ongoing training school within the new Permaculture Laboratory;
- develop local economy through the Laboratory of Ethical Production and Rural Marketing where natural materials from the cultivation process are transformed for ecological construction and put into the market;
- train new innovative business enterprises and support new start-up companies which will be hosted within the Business Incubator Centre;
- develop the Km0 local market through a network with other local producers, hence improve the current open-air week market;
- act on the quality of the urban spaces: architecture interventions will activate spaces within the existing and un-used public buildings for the laboratories and the Incubator Centre and provide areas for events, a bike path, walkways and seating areas, all to be set along the agriculture areas overlooking the greenery.
- Comune di Pozzuoli
- Università degli Studi di salerno - University
- Coldiretti Napoli - National Association
- Confagricoltura Napoli - National Association
- Agrocoltura - Private Company
- L'iniziativa - Associazione di promozione sociale - NGO
- Fondazione FORMIT - Research Center
The MAC project will create a new agro-urban landscape which will radically transform the character of the neighborhood: a landscape made of urban areas and agriculture land connected by a productive thread; the agriculture giving work opportunities, training and production to the city; the city benefiting of the agriculture areas as gardens, thanks to the innovative techniques which will also increase the vegetation.
Together with the architectural, urban, landscape and agriculture investments, the project will realise: 1 cooperative / 50 trained people in the permaculture agriculture / 40 trained people in in ethical production and rural marketing / 30 trained people in Business Innovation and Agri-Business / 3 start-up companies (with a budget and an office).
February 2017: Planning Outline data collection
May 2017: Agricultural Cultivation Project and Guidelines
October 2017: Agro-Urban Architecture and Landscape Design Project
July 2018: Public Event
December 2018: Realisation of the Agro-Urban Landscape
October 2019: Start-up and Business Innovation Contest Awards