> Identity of Place, Eco-design, Ecological Planning, Landscape Ecology
We affirm that the land-use planning and the spatial management of a city should reconcile not only the cultural heritage (in our specific case, the recovery of the industrial buildings and the assimilation of the entire site to the rhythms of the neighbourhood life), but also consider the physical and biological heritage of a given environment (in our case, the local biodiversity and the particular physical place developed between the Medvednica Mountain foothills and the Sava river). In essence, the territory should be governed by relying on a basic ecological principle of symbiosis or “co-evolution” between man and nature. The overall landscape concept aims at strengthening the bio-physical character of the landscape (the Medvednica Mountain, its foothills and the alluvial plain of the Sava River); it complements and enhances the existing green infrastructure where Medvednica’s green “fingers” penetrate into the urban area, descend down the forested foothills and approach to the Sava River and its plain. In shaping the site greenery, we create scenes of distinctive perceptual qualities, selecting native species to maximise their habitat potential, as well as exotic ones which have shown to be better adapted to unfavorable urban conditions. Street trees, green spaces, and green roofs make the site more liveable, improve the ecological qualities of the city providing cooling, shade, and cleaner air, reduce noise, enhance biodiversity and maximise the opportunities for people to experience nature close to hand. Turning our attention to the cultural aspects, we propose to recover and reuse the on-site industrial buildings assigning them new socio-cultural functions, within a multifunctional urban concept. A vibrant city should guarantee the spatial coexistence of different social, cultural, leisure, economic, and environmental functions within walking distance. Grouping different functions within a high-density complex can have a positive impact on mobility, especially if wise political actions for public transport are taken. The proposed model is the one that gave splendour and richness to the traditional European cities before the modern zoning undermined their essence: density, multiple uses, social and cultural diversity.