Case Study 7

Neighbourhood reactivation focused on social integration and environmental sustainability

Typology 7: ruin

Ángel Castro Vidal, Jorge García Vila, Patrizia Cosimo, Tania García Tubio

Research Question
The Group investigates through building age profiling how the “Plan Especial de Proteccion e Reforma Interior” (PEPRI) interacts with a ruin in the center of coruna. The research focuses on finding proposals for the government and for the local community.

Research Methodology
The action network visualizes the timeline of the decline of the areas commercial businesses due to increased construction of shopping centers around the periphery of coruna, the development of the PEPRI and the gradual decline of the building into a ruin. Investigating actors in society, economy and the law it reveals a possible strategy by the owner to let the building fall completely into ruin speculating on a permit that would allow him to build a new building and connect it then to the two adjacent buildings, which belong to the same owner.
The group offers three sets of proposals. First a list of 8 points aimed at the government including creating a register of ruins, forced sales, temporary public spaces and tax incentives for owners who contribute to socially relevant projects among others. Second proposals to the community, especially neighbourhod associations to increase public visibility of their work, creating a commercial association and creating a housing association. Third the team developed a so called “estratexiador”, an ideas creator, that combines 3 elements: Community, Owners and spaces, combining them in a various ways. Having come up with an interesting combination, as a last step the estratexiador recommends those who use it to create a neighbourhood group that with the help of architects, promoters and the council then can develop a social intervention in their ruin, or any other of that sort.


A reactivación do barrio centrada na integración social e na sostibilidade ambiental

Tipoloxía 7: ruína

Ángel Castro Vidal, Jorge García Vila, Patrizia Cosimo, Tania García Tubio

Pregunta disparadora
O Grupo investiga a través da creación de perfís de idade como o "Plan Especial de Protección e Reforma Interior" (PEPRI) a intervención nunha ruína no centro da Coruña. A investigación céntrase en atopar propostas para o goberno e para a comunidade local.

Metodoloxía da investigación
A rede de acción visualiza a liña de tempo do declive das áreas comerciais a causa da intensa construción de centros comerciais en toda a periferia da Coruña, o desenvolvemento dun Plan Especial de reforma Interior da zona e o deterioro gradual do edificio en ruína. O estudo dos actores sociais, da economía e da lexislación desvelan a estratexia que posiblemente seguiu o propietario para que o edificio deveña en estado de ruína, o que lle permitiría construír un novo edificio. Posteriormente conectaríao aos predios estremeiros, que pertencen ao mesmo propietario.

O grupo ofrece tres conxuntos de propostas. A primeira, destinada ao goberno  propón a creación dun rexistro de ruínas, a proposición de vendas forzadas e de incentivos fiscais para os propietarios que contribúan a proxectos de relevancia social, entre outros elementos. Segunda proposta: para a comunidade, especialmente ás asociacións veciñais, para aumentar a visibilidade pública do seu traballo, crear unha asociación comercial e crear unha asociación de vivenda.En terceiro lugar o equipo desenvolveu un chamado "estratexiador", un creador de ideas que combina tres elementos: comunidade, propietarios e espazos, combinándoos de varias maneiras. Ao chegar a unha interesante combinación, como último paso o “estratexiador” recomenda aos que o utilizan crear un grupo de veciños que, coa axuda de arquitectos, promotores e o concello, poida desenvolver unha intervención social na súa ruína ou calquera outra intervención relacionada.


Javier Harguindey

Interested in uncovering the links between forces that shape the urban environment (social, technical,…) with focus on the demographics and data.

Architect / Urbanist, UDC

Prof. Dr. Placido Lizancos

Interested in building up a research methodology to address key questions on identification and classification of the issue. Interested in understanding what has the "crisis" left behind and to establish a scientific method by which to address it. Interested in exposing academia to "real life" contexts and setting the teaching conditions to ensure that the classroom is not committed to supporting such practice that facilitates such crisis.

Architecture Professor UDC

Scott Lloyd

Interested in understanding the actions, networks and forces that give shape to the city. Interested developing new models of applied research to investigate the issue. Interested in the format of teaching to inform and empower the next generation of city makers.

Architect, MSc Arch ETHZ

Xosé Lois

Interested in analysing what can be done with existed buildings with the notion that each example is of itself a particular context. This takes into account the relations between different components of the systems that shape the building context.

Population and the role of Galicia in state policy where real state is one of the main economic motor of economic growth.

This is a very complex situation, we cannot propose just one question, as the project is develops, questions will appear. What kind of economic model we want? Rental or production? What kind of country do we want? We destroy our productive model and now we have a speculative model based on construction of space

Architect, UDC

Hans-Christian Rufer

Interested to create access to affordable housing. Interested in a multidisciplinary approach that corresponds to the complex environment of housing. Interested to use the architecture studio as a place to integrate the diverse range of partners into site specific projects.

Architect, MSc Arch ETHZ


Dr. Estefanía Calo

Interested in recovering links between the right to housing and the right to the City: both are under threat and both are required in order to achieve urban justice. Interested in establishing Empty Coruña? is a first stage to develop knowledge about how to resist this systemic threat against basic citizen rights.

Sociologist, UDC


Anxo Calvo

Is the market able to solve the problem by itself or should we be looking for regulatory solutions? What regulatory frameworks are available and appropriate for Coruña?

Economist, UDC

Roberto Castro Thome

Interested in the question of regulation as nothing is possible from a single bank with even the ethical banks that are trying to do something having no success. Furthermore interested in the Valuing agencies as they overvalued housing during the creation of the bubble.

Banker, Association Pro-Housing


Fernando Del Llano

Interested in researching the current conditions as an environment issue focusing on energy and economic point of view.

Environmental Scientist, UDC

Ángeles Longadera

Interested in researching energy efficiency, energy “pobreza”

Environmental Scientist, UDC

Urban Studies

Manuel García Docampo

Interested in investigating a research methodology that encompasses the three dimensions of: Agency – Processes – Objects

Sociologist, UDC   


José María Cardesín Diz

Interested in researching urban growth and development of 7 cities in Galicia during the crisis in order to compare them with A Coruña

Historian, UDC


Ricard Leonardo

Interested in researching the formal administrative tools utilised to frame and criminalize “illegal” occupation. Research should take a critical point of view and investigate what people do by themselves to solve the problem.

Architect / Activist


Michael Juan Sierra

Sonia Beltrán

Interested in researching the right to housing

Interested in researching the social problem of the crisis and how these are urban issues

Architecture Students / Mapping team, UDC


Amal Nnechachi

Interested in the human side of the crisis as hauman rights are being undermined. Drawing from experiences of colleagues who have suffered directly from the housing problems.

Cartolab UDC

Alberto Varela

Interested in mapping and understanding the effect of the crisis in the urban context in order to visualize the problem.  In order to identify the problem the social point of view should be taken into account through information tools and extend the study to other cities.

Cartolab UDC

Building Engineering

Santiago López

Interested in researching technical approaches to improving environmental issues and to minimize the environmental impact of empty buildings. There is a social interest in this approach.

We should complete empty buildings taking into account alternative materials and techniques and develop innovative environmental building techniques.

Building Engineer