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New European Bauhaus

The Fantastic Forest Phenomenon

What to do with cities needing a fresh narrative to move forward? Conceive an urban-architectural makeover.

The Fantastic Forest Phenomenon © European Union
The Fantastic Forest Phenomenon
© European Union, 2021

What to do with cities needing a fresh narrative to move forward? Conceive an urban-architectural makeover. ?️??

That is the goal of "The Fantastic Forest Phenomenon," an ongoing urban regeneration project in Karlovac, Croatia.

The project aims to develop a modern and green metropolis and thus initiate a new stage in developing a city struggling to keep up with the challenges of the new millennium.

The concept is one of many submitted for the New European Bauhaus rising star prizes in the category of "Solutions for the co-evolution of built environment and nature."

The project has been designed to accommodate high-density mixed-uses due to Karlovac's urban setting. Its developers strive to create a modern environment that balances urban and natural elements.

The site is transformed into a vibrant mixed-use neighborhood called Luščić that functions as a self-sustainable and circular space producing energy, food, knowledge – and new levels of urbanity for the surrounding areas.

Luščić is envisioned as an immersive experience in which human-made and natural components coexist to create a hybrid urban-natural ecosystem with a distinct, forest-like ambiance. Some areas are conserved and enlarged to create a forest-like setting, serving as a public garden and park.

Protecting the land's rich fir and pine forest is one example. The garden, grown in vertical hydroponic greenhouses, organically spills over into the research hub, public pool, sports hall, school, and kindergarten. ????

Water is recycled from paved surfaces and fog is collected using fog-catchers attached to the facades of some of the buildings.

"Cities should be looked at as living organisms," the project's creators said. "Luščić is conceived as a system, not as a series of fixed objects in space."

The programme also aims to boost the region's economic competitiveness by building a renewable energy research centre right in the heart of the neighborhood.

? © European Union
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