Aylin Gürel, Lea Pammer, Nadia Raza:
"Learning from Leonding - Cross Scaling Intersectional Urban Issues"
First AYLIN GÜREL, LEA PAMMER and NADIA RAZA in their own words:
"We dealt with SOCIAL CRISES. Our RESEARCH was mainly about DISCRIMINATION in PUBLIC SPACE, GENTRIFICATION, HOMELESSNESS, VIOLENCE, SOCIAL IMBALANCES. In the PROCESS, we realized how important DIVERSITY is in the PROFESSION itself. And not to look at PROBLEMS separately from each other but INTERSECTIONALLY."
Starting from the BASIC ASSUMPTION that INNER CITY DISTRICTS are not REPRESENTATIVE of the STATE OF BEING of the entire LINZ URBAN AREA and its different CHARACTERISTICS due to increased PUBLIC, ECONOMIC and PLANNING ATTENTION, Aylin Gürel, Lea Pammer and Nadia Raza decided to spend a semester studying a PERIPHERAL URBAN LOCATION. Strictly speaking, their STUDY AREA LEONDING is not part of the LINZ CITY ASSOCIATION, but with about 30,000 inhabitants is an INDEPENDENT MUNICIPALITY that is directly linked to the UPPER AUSTRIAN PROVINCIAL CAPITAL. On several WALKS - following METHODS of URBAN RESEARCH as well as methods of STROLLOGY - the three of them worked out the basics for understanding the URBAN STRUCTURE of Leonding, which were condensed in subsequent research and ANALYSES. It should turn out that Leonding, read in the sense of a POLYCENTRIC UNDERSTANDING of CITY, is in its SYMBIOSIS with Linz not in a position to form its own CENTER, and that the SMALL TOWN famous for AUSTRIA’S LONGEST SHOPPING BOULEVARD (actually nothing more than a MULTI-LANE EXPRESSWAY) is furthermore characterized by an extremely difficult to comprehend tangle of abruptly colliding URBAN AND RURAL SCALES.
Another self-imposed PREMISE of this PROJECT was to apply PRINCIPLES derived from the CONCEPT of "GENDER+" (Heidrun Wankiewicz, Lidewij Tummers) to the CONSIDERATION of the research area, which in the course of the project became an APPROACH more and more influenced by INTERSECTIONAL IDEAS. Aylin, Lea and Nadia, based on their COLLECTED FINDINGS, were primarily concerned with restoring the CONNECTIONS between URBAN ARTEFACTS (loosely Rossi), which had been lost in Leonding's almost impenetrable HETEROGENEITY, and which were also of PUBLIC CHARACTER.
In the end, the three decided to do an UBRAN DEVELOPMENT TREATMENT of the STREET AXIS beginning at MEIXNERKREUZUNG in the south, which extends via EHRENFELLNER-STRASSE, the DIPLOM-INGENIEUR-FERDINAN-KARL-WEG and FÜCHSELBACHSTRASSE - where it crosses the LINZ-WELS-RAILWAY-LINE - to the north of Leonding, CROSSING a WIDE VARIETY of different, UBRAN and RURAL CONDITIONS. Basically, the whole area has been TRAFFIC-CALMED and PRIVATE TRANSPORT reduced to a MINIMUM. At the Meixnerkreuzung, WELSERSTRASSE (the longest shopping boulevard...) was partially relocated to LEVEL -1, and at the CROSSING itself a MULTI-USE building with a TRAM STATION for a wide variety of PUBLIC USES was built, which houses the new VOLKSHAUS, among other things. The triangle WEGSCHEIDER STRASSE, Ehrenfellner-Strasse and HARTERFELDSTRASSE, where a number of URBAN ARTEFACTS have already accumulated (including SPORTS FACILITIES and YOUTH CENTERS), will be transformed into a CENTRAL PLACE (aka SQUARE) through a few INTERVENTIONS. The TRANSFORMATION of a former car dealership into a “ALIBI PETROL STATION” plays an important role: in Austria there are no SPÄTKAUF-shops, after 10pm you can only shop at PETROL STATIONS - well, you can't fill up your car here, but there is a LOW-THRESHOLD CONSUMPTION OFFER for the new center. The connection to the RAILWAY LINE Linz-Wels located in the north of the processing area, which is currently characterized by the classic FEATURES of the "ZWISCHENSTADT" (Thomas Sieverts) and where the way to the station leads along DARK PATHS between warehouses, was processed by Aylin, Lea and Nadia with the PROPOSAL of a HYBRID traffic and housing TYPOLOGY, which is aimed at parameters of GENDER-SENSETIVE PLANNING, especially at a younger TARGET GROUP such as students.
At the end, the three of them again in their own words:
"At the beginning, it seemed IMPOSSIBLE to APPROACH such a large, unclear PLANNING SPACE, with the ulterior MOTIVE of working on this ZWISCHENSTADT-space in an INTERSECTIONAL PLANNING way. But this EXPERIMENT has opened up NEW PERSPECTIVES on ARCHITECTURE, URBAN PLANNING and our ACTIONS as FEMALE PLANNERS.”
© Aylin Gürel, Lea Pammer, Nadia Raza