Man’s work on Poveglia has been ruined by the power of nature, during decades of vegetation’s action. A new equilibrium between man and nature is needed to bring back human activities on the island. In the University Island the boundary between building spaces and wilderness is evanescent. The community of students and teachers interacts directly with the natural elements such as soil, water and greenery.
Nature provides Poveglia’s habitants the opportunity to study, relax and farm their own food.
In the project soil consumption is minimized: we decided to build the minimum and restore the most.
Only the residential buildings and modules have been newly designed.
All other promises are settled in existing buildings designed with different approaches.
Why should an island be isolated? Water is not an obstacle: it’s a connective tissue that gives the opportunity to reach Poveglia.
The island is connected to the surrounding cities thanks to the existing Venice-Chioggia vaporetto, with a new stop close to the octagon or via private boat thanks to the new jetties.
A boat-sharing system provides individual transportation and, the most trained people, can even use kayaks to reach the Lido or directly the downtown.
On the island, ancient ways had a regular scheme. New paths integrate and intersect the existing ones with flexible and natural shapes. This new widespread network covers the entire island, connecting the main points of interest extending on the water with bridges and docks.
Single tracks will spontaneously develop in the fields and meadows following users preferred ways.
Poveglia will host a Natural Science and Soil Bioengineering university. The island will transform into an open-air lab, where students can breed plants, study the unique lagoon environment and understand the effect of climate change on the delicate equilibrium of water and land.
Take care of Poveglia means to have people in it. Have people in the island means to provide residential solution to different housing needs.
Long-term residences for students are hosted in three residential buildings, including various room solutions and common spaces.
Visitors and tourists can experience a stay close to the nature in the residential modules that are spread in the wildest part of the island.
The proximity to Venice and its artistic activity naturally brings culture to the island. Dedicated spaces such an exhibition room and an auditorium have been inserted in the existing buildings. An amphitheatre is dig in the octagon to provide a space for concerts and shows.
Living in an island means being part of a community. Here people interact during studying and working activities, take care of fields and kitchen garden, and play different sport in open air. Living in an island doesn’t mean to be isolated.
Farmer markets are organized each week to sell the vegetables locally produced, exibitions and conferences are performed and people from Venice can spend some time in the nature. A rooftop restaurant&lounge is settled on the building facing the octagon, providing great view on the lagoon and tasty aperitifs.