Ravenna

Digital transition

DARE - Digital Environment for collaborative Alliances to Regenerate urban Ecosystems in middle-sized cities

No district of the city and no citizen should feel left behind. I am particularly happy that our City of Ravenna will be able to start-up the DARE project thanks to the UIA Initiative. Our beloved Darsena district represents our history and our capability to design the future of the City. Now, not only will it benefit of new basic infrastructures provided by the Municipality, but it will become an open-air lab for regeneration and digital transition. We will work to make the Darsena a place where it is nice to live and work, and where people, visitors and investors can find inspiration and opportunities. Our duty is to respond to citizens needs by listening, collaborating and innovating day after day.

Michele de Pascale, Mayor of Ravenna
The project in numbers
20,284
inhabitants live in Darsena District, a densely populated suburb of Ravenna
24
hectares brownfield along the Docks of Candiano canal characterize the area
30
years is the time the decline has lasted, with no major investments in the area
16
pieces of smart urban design and interactive public devices are going to turn the Darsena into a digitally equipped district
20,000
aware digital interactions by citizens are foreseen by the end of the project
4,998,004.00
Total ERDF budget granted
Challenge addressed

In Ravenna we have a district called “DARSENA”, the city docks. It used to be the city business and lively pole, until the Port has developed outside the city. Moreover, the railway has divided the historical city center and the suburbs. 
These factors made Darsena an abandoned industrial area (as large as the city center, with 32 private owners) side to side with a densely populated residential area (20.284 people, 16% non-nationals, 23% over 65 y.o., low incomes). Environmental situation, security, cohesion are challenging, as well as developing new functions and assets for the district, where no major business investment was recorded in the last 30 years. 
After unsuccessful top-down attempts to redevelop, in 2010-15 a new path has started. An integrated strategy was designed through a participatory process, and since 2016 an infrastructural action plan was started-up by the Municipality and some private investments popped-up. 
DARE moves from such complex context to engage a powerful Urban Regeneration Process based on and enhanced by digital transition. On one side, we dare to make our city go digital starting from the most critical district and urban policy. On the other, we believe a data & digital based regeneration process will enhance and support a new citizens-centred perspective and implementation.
Digital culture will make citizens (the younger, the older, the decision makers, the entrepreneurs…) not only digitally aware but also enabled to be part of the new collaboration framework (by sharing data, projects and actions) for their own life quality.

Solution proposed

DARE proposes an Urban Regeneration Process based on new alliances between public, private profit and non-profit sectors and residents. In order to create a collaborative platform, we will develop a digital environment and a participatory process. The digital platform will make data accessible, understandable and useful, describing the district, the process and the changes and enabling, in so doing, not only decision makers but also citizens to become active part in the process. 
Such system has to rely on a widespread DIGITAL CULTURE to allow people to become aware digital city changers and interact with regenerations iconic services/engagement actions based on data & digital tools. Platform and skills will allow us to collaborate rapidly and effectively to co-develop and start-up a set of new integrated and concrete actions for regeneration. 
The new governance will include a multidisciplinary expert team supporting feasibility and sustainability of projects and a specific focus on “story telling” the whole process.
Finally, we propose to assess our results against a new set of quality of life indicators, that may truly seize the improvements in the life of citizens.

Expected results

We aim at starting a process that may shift Darsena district from abandoned, neglected, static area, to attractive and innovative urban ecosystem, thanks to digital transition. We think that in 3 years’ time, 
Darsena district can become “the place to be”, where regeneration is tangible, in a connected urban environment. A point of no return towards quality of life. In addition, we focus on starting up a long-term process rather than short-term results.
A process based on a knowledge-based tactic, thanks to a physical and digital system of collection and integration of relevant data, based on an inclusive citizens-centered digital-based interaction system, measurable and evaluated according to Quality of Life indicators. 
Ravenna people will evolve into “city changers” thanks to the acquisition of a digital and participatory culture and Darsena district will be attractive towards external key targets (visitors, investors, entrepreneurs) and positively perceived by the citizens as a lively, innovative, healthy, safe & secure, inclusive place to live, enjoy and work.

Main milestones

July 2020: Darsena digitally equipped and citizens digitally aware
December 2020: ViR, the Darsena Virtual Realm, released (including data management platform, content management system and public interface)
February 2021: DALIA, the digital archive of the Darsena areas, to appeal residents, visitors and investors
November 2021: Darsena will be more innovative, healthy, safe & secure, inclusive thanks to new digital-related services and projects
April 2022: Darsena tactic 2022-23 issued from participation and new governance system
July 2022: Solid Urban Regeneration Process ready to evolve, sustain itself, scale-up and be transferred

Partnership
  • Municipality of Ravenna
  • Cineca - NGO
  • European Crowdfunding Network - NGO
  • STUDIOMAPP - NGO
  •  ENEA DTE-SEN - research centre
  • CIFLA - research centre
  • CertiMaC - research centre
  •  Chia Lab - SME
  •  BiPart Social Enterprise - SME
  • University of Bologna
  •  CNA Ravenna - bbuisiness supprot organsiation
  • Legacoop Romagna - business support organisation
     
The project in numbers
20,284
inhabitants live in Darsena District, a densely populated suburb of Ravenna
24
hectares brownfield along the Docks of Candiano canal characterize the area
30
years is the time the decline has lasted, with no major investments in the area
16
pieces of smart urban design and interactive public devices are going to turn the Darsena into a digitally equipped district
20,000
aware digital interactions by citizens are foreseen by the end of the project
4,998,004.00
Total ERDF budget granted
Contact of the project
Emanuela Medeghini
Project manager - Head of unit EUropean policies
Levente Polyak
UIA Expert

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