Planetary Grounds

View Our Works
Planetary Grounds

Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /nfs/c02/h01/mnt/20400/domains/ on line 157

Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /nfs/c02/h01/mnt/20400/domains/ on line 680

Our Works

Previous Next Close

Public Realm Vision Buenos Aires

Category: Media

The Ministry of Transport of Argentina is implementing an urban development project of Gral. Roca Railway network between Buenos Aires and La Plata. It includes public realm interventions in the station environments. Groundlab was commission by the IADB to develop a vision of how the train stations’ public landscape could be developed integrating green and blue infrastructure. The project will be a fundamental pillar of the city where investment is required not only to increase capacity and coverage but also to increase the quality of service, infrastructure and environment that stations provide for a sustainable and inclusive growth. OFFICE: AA Groundlab STATUS: Delivered DESIGN STAGES: Research, Policy and Landscape Vision CLIENT: Inter-American Development Bank (IADB)

SHR Mexico City

Category: Selected projects

In Mexico, and thanks to a British Council grant, Groundlab has developed a digital tool for policy makers to assess the vulnerability of water in Mexico City. The tool has been developed alongside Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis   (CASA) and the British Geographical Survey (BGS) to create future scenarios and understand how the implementation of ecotechnologies such as constructed wetlands, rain harvesting and others, can help mitigate the impact of climate change and water security in Mexico City. 2021, Modelo de Evaluación de Resiliencia Socio Hidrológica en la Cd de Mexico OFFICE: AA Groundlab STATUS: Delivered DESIGN STAGES: Research and Policy Funds: British Council

Green New Deal Glasgow

Category: Selected projects

In the UK, AA Groundlab have partnered with think tank Common-Wealth to imagine the implementation of a set of Green New Deal policies in Glasgow, in a 2030 scenario ahead of COP 26. The project envisions Glasgow in 3 scales: at the city-scale, new networks of green and blue infrastructure are proposed to build flooding resilience, bring people closer to nature and transition to alternative energies; at the street-scale ‘away with the cars’ policies increase the space for pedestrians, public transport, green infrastructure and green community business; at the tenement-scale retrofitting ensures social housing has proper insulation and energy saving mechanisms for the inhabitants health and climate change together with sharing communal facilities for maintenance, food production and community leisure. OFFICE: AA Groundlab STATUS: Delivered DESIGN STAGES: Research and Policy A collaboration between Common Wealth & AA Groundlab Check full interactive project HERE

AA Groundlab

Category: Selected projects

Climate change is the biggest challenge facing humanity and to address it requires a radical transformation of the design profession that focuses on a transdisciplinary approach. AA Ground Lab is a research design initiative that aims to investigate ways in which this transformation can take place by engaging with a diverse range of projects, scales and stakeholders in the Global South. Through collaborations with the Interamerican Development Bank, Latin American governments and research councils in the UK, Ground Lab is developing visualisation strategies, mappings and spatial understandings of socio- ecological systems. These will lead to proposal strategies that aim to achieve Latin American NDC (Nationally Determined Contributions), gradually reduce carbon emissions and decarbonise social justice bases through design. AA Ground Lab visualises and politicises invisible global networks and the spatial impact of policy making, alongside the design of ground techniques that imagine alternatives to standard design practices. Directors: Jose Alfredo Ramirez and Clara Oloriz Research Fellows: Daniel Kiss, Rotem Lewisohn and Iulia Stefan Collaborators: Elena Suastegui, Rafael Guadalupe Martinez Caldera Projects: Latin-American migration atlas, informal green infrastructure prototypes, green infrastructure guidelines, metropolitan mappings, British Council Institutional Links Grant "Adaptation and socio-hydrological resilience in the peri-urban environment of Mexico City: Artificial Wetland" with British Geological Survey (BGS), Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA) and Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana (UAM).

LATAM Inmigrando

Category: cartography

Name: LATAM INMIGRANDO. Main purpose: Cartographic project to understand migration dynamics in Latin America. Climate breakdown, social inequalities and today's Covid-19 pandemic are exacerbating migration and the need to understand it becomes more urgent than ever. Team: Daniel Kiss, Rotem Lewinsohn, Iulia Stefan, Rafael Guadalupe Martinez Caldera, Clara Oloriz Sanjuan, Alfredo Ramirez Inmigrando project by Inter American Development Bank Status: Published / Download here


Category: cartography

Name: LATAM MR. Main purpose: Cartographic project to understand aspects of the planetary urbanisation and the impacts on the Latin American Region. Team: Daniel Kiss, Rafael Guadalupe Martinez Caldera, Clara Oloriz Sanjuan, Alfredo Ramirez Project by Inter American Development Bank Status: Published

Sochi Post Olympic Development: Imeretinka 2.0

Category: cartography

Name: Master Plan for the Post-Olympic Development of the city of Sochi: Imeretinka 2.0. Location: Sochi, Rusia. Year of Implementation: 2017. Main purpose: Sitting between the towering Caucasus Mountains and the majestic Black Sea, Imeretinka territory enjoys an exceptional geographical location. These unique conditions set the perfect background for a successful post-Olympic development that could take advantage of: adjacent coastlines, nearby ski resorts, ready-to-go transport facilities and airport, and Olympic sports facilities, all embedded into Sochi greater urban area in a benevolent subtropical weather. The design principles aim at capitalising on these paradisical opportunities and formulate a unique Imeretinka BRAND and IDENTITY as THE PLACE WHERE THE CAUCASIAN MOUNTAINS MEET THE BLACK SEA. Sitting between the towering Caucasus Mountains and the majestic Black Sea, Imeretinka territory enjoys an exceptional geographical location. These unique conditions set the perfect background for a successful post-Olympic development that could take advantage of: adjacent coastlines, nearby ski resorts, ready-to-go transport facilities and airport, and Olympic sports facilities, all embedded into Sochi greater urban area in a benevolent subtropical weather. The design principles aim at capitalising on these paradisical opportunities and formulate a unique Imeretinka BRAND and IDENTITY as THE PLACE WHERE THE CAUCASIAN MOUNTAINS MEET THE BLACK SEA. At the site’s scale, it also brings reconciliation strategies for some of the site constrains such as the fact that the current seafront access and views of most of the given lots are limited. These tactics include the ‘MULTIPLICATION OF THE SHORELINE,’ in a series of waterscape bands parallel to the coastline, to maximize the inhabitants’ contact with water. These bands weave a mesh of blue (water) and green (landscape) strands that hold together a unique urban development of “MOUNTAINS AND WATER.” Added to this, the SUPERBLOCK urban fabric allows great pedestrian and bicycle permeability and environments to increase accessibility across the site from the mountains (train station and car access points), through the development and to the shoreline.  Each superblock acquires a differentiated identity according to programmatic distribution that gives a quarter characters to each of them. The adjacent 5 design principles form the key concepts at architectural scale: multiplying the shore line, access to the sea, unique architectural type (mountains & valleys), superblocks creating pedestrian + cycle friendly environments and unique Smart Phasing Strategy. Site: NA. Design Stages: International Competition Team: Groundlab, Tyrens, AZPML, Orchestra Status: Shortlisted

Garden Courtyard/ Hellowood

Category: Selected projects

Name: Project village 2017 - HELLO WOOD. Location: Csoromfolde, Hungary. Year of Implementation: 2017. Main purpose: Gardens are a space for cultivation, human care, conversation, dialogue, friendship and storytelling- In short, a space for communalization.... To complete the life of the Village we believe in the necessary implementation of a garden, a crucial element to produce encounters, encourage conversation, foster care and cultivation of human and nature relations. A garden will provide a space for onsite learning, production and reflections in an ever-evolving campus that confront and questions our relation to nature. Our garden will be a place of intimacy and reflection, a place to stop, think and share the daily activities of the village. To flourish, it will require a constant care by the villagers in the heart of the village. Embedded in the ground and nourish by it, it will represent, literally and concretely, the inevitable dependent link the village has with its grounds and its context for survival. Site: 0,01 Ha. Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design, Design Development, Detail Design, Site Supervision Client: Hello Wood. Status: Built.

Nok Sambong/ Mount Synthetica

Category: Competitions

Name: Yeoui-Naru Ferry Terminal. Location: Seoul, South Korea. Year of Competition: 2017. Main purpose: Landscape as a concept and a practice has changed in recent times. No longer is it founded in the historical ideals of conservation and preservation, or the provision of a picturesque imitation of nature. Now, the technological performance of landscape can be considered alongside its biological and botanical qualities, in a bio-synthetic post-natural experience. Mount Synthetica provides a prototype for this hybrid landscape in which the logistical and transport requirements of a ferry terminal have been fused with a synthetic, digitally augmented form of wilderness. The design for the ferry terminal takes cues from the classic Korean mountain landscapes as represented in paintings. Similarly, Mount Synthetica provides an iconic visual feature through a vertically exagerated topography elevated above the flat Han River landscape. Expanding on this cultural mountain-landscape reference, the building volume is distributed in four identifiable mounts that correspond to ferry berthing wharfs. Wayfinding is integrated as a recognisable feature in the pavements. The volume fragmentation and openness was developed through a series of environmental simulations aiming to provide microclimatic ventilation and shading during the warmer summer months. These microclimates, enclosed by the biodigital skin provide an ideal environment to enjoy the terraces and interior courtyard spaces. At Mount Synthetica, horticultural and ecological qualities are integrated with a smart and iconic lighting system. Taking advantage of a variety of renewable energy sources, including wind, solar and hydro power, a vivid lighting display indicates current climate and pollution data for the surrounding area. This lighting will provide a register of environmental performance within the public imagination. Site: 1,5 Ha. Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design. Client: Seoul Metropolitan Government. Status: International Competition.

Tejido Urbano

Category: Competitions

El “Parque Lineal Ferrocarril de Cuernavaca” representa la posibilidad de suturar e integrar socialmente parte del territorio metropolitano a través de la construcción de una infraestructura social y ambiental que permitirá integrar y reducir las condiciones de desigualdad, consolidando y ampliando espacios públicos, conectando equipamientos (nuevos y existentes), integrando redes de movilidad y construyendo un paisaje hídrico que fomente el manejo responsable del agua de lluvia. Se propone un modelo replicable en otras áreas de la Ciudad con condiciones similares que puede generar espacios de calidad, redes continuas de movilidad y la reinyección de agua de lluvia al manto acuífero, recuperando espacios en desuso mediante su transformación en áreas verdes y zonas de esparcimiento.

  • Name: Tejido Urbano.
  • Location: Ciudad de Mexico.
  • Year of Competition: 2016
  • Brief: Parque Lineal Ferrocarril de Cuernavaca
  • Design Stages: Competition Submission
  • Client: Ciudad de Mexico
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Team: Groundlab with Territorios Taller de Arquitectura
  • Status: Submitted

The Moorside Tarn & Pike

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

Moorside sits strategically between two fundamental landscape features, the majestic peaks of the Lake District and the vast blue mass of the Irish Sea. Our proposal reflects both physically and visually on the sublime qualities of these landscapes and that of the Cumbrian territory in general, in the production of an awe-inspiring, sustainable and ecologically restorative terrain utilising the spoil accumulated from the power station. We propose the organisation of the mounds to create a central valley which emphasises views across the site, towards the Lake District highest peaks and the sunset landscapes of the seaside. Through the inversion of the existing hydrology network, water runoff is redistributed centrally to reproduce a mountain lake locally known as Tarns. The Tarn is a distinctive feature acting as the hinge of the project, managing the water volume on site, choreographing the astonishing views and organising the mounded landforms that are brought to life through rainfall. While the main publicly accessible site involves the creation of the Moorside Tarn, the south mounds site could be used to create the Moorside Pike. This single hill stands in direct contrast to the tarn formation in order to provide a clear identity to both landforms. Whilst the Moorside Tarn welcomes visitors and choreographs its movements and visuals in and around the water body, the pike directs views and provides a singular viewing spot that witnesses the transformation of waste material into a sustainable landscape and distinctive landmark.

  • Name: The Moorside Tarn & Pike.
  • Location: Moorside.
  • Year of Competition: 2016
  • Brief: Screening Mounds for a Nuclear Power Station in Moorside
  • Design Stages: Competition Submission
  • Client: Nugen
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Team: Groundlab with SpaceHub
  • Status: Submitted

L A N D script _ data S C A P E

Category: Essays

L A N D script _ data S C A P E | ‘Digital’ Agency within Manufactured Territories New technologies constantly change and re-shape the way we think, design and produce our environments and territories. Our impulse to control the surroundings in which we are immersed and live has triggered many of the innovations in technologies and methods that are now widely available to designers today. The invention of geometry, for instance, was triggered by the necessity to provide certainty to the distribution, property and taxation of productive land around the Nile that shifted with every annual flooding – fact on which the fertility of the land and thus, their living also depended (Gardner 2009). More recently, the development of contemporary cartography, concomitant of the emergence of innovative surveying tools, provides a reliable technical tool for states and governments to ensure the control and delimitation of land, resources and management of territories within and beyond their frontiers. Along these lines, digital cartographic tools provide precise and accurate readings of the world based on their capacity to seamlessly handle and assemble vast amounts of information from multiple fields in the generation of territorial datascapes. Methodologies based on these innovative tools imply abstract systems of organization that provide frameworks to develop and script concrete interventions and management schemes into given territories. However, the processing capabilities of digital technologies have stressed the accuracy and objectiveness of information. The apparent objectiveness, efficiency and pragmatism of these methodological approaches have detached these technologies from its purpose, while the procedural rigour has accentuated the scientific claims of design in the validation of management decisions. On this basis, we argue that this operative framework blurs and questions the role of the designer, and its capacity to engage with territories and the dynamics that shape them. In these conditions, digital tools can exacerbate designer’s detachment from contemporary conditions (as a mere observer) whilst diminishing its direct participation and implication from reality. This essay attempts to put forward alternative and novel ways to handle the potential of digital tools, both from the point of view of analysis and intervention, addressing the question of the designer’s agency within the scope of what we define as  landscape and territorial projects. In order to do that, it proposes the re-engagement of designers in the idea of land-script and datas-capes, as a way forward to acknowledge the power of digital tools in the hands of the creative and critical stance of the designer. Both land-script and data-scapes share common etymological roots with landscape. From a broader understanding of the latter, as a social and cultural construct, we intend to re-articulate our relation to the former terms.  Excerpt from: L A N D script _ data S C A P E | ‘Digital’ Agency within Manufactured Territories, in 'Innovations in Landscape Architecture’ J. Anderson and D. Ortega, eds., Routledge, 2016

Paseo Civico Metropolitano

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

Groundlab as part of a consortium made of LyonBosch Architects+Martic, Idom and Sergio Chiquetto has won a major competition to redevelop the Alameda/Providencia Urban Corridor in the City of Santiago,Chile.

The project comprises the design of a 12 km transport/urban corridor that enhances the public space and integrates public transport to the civic life of the city by prioritizing pedestrian and bicycle movement. It creates a linear plaza framed by water and tree landscape that brings back the character of the corridor as an ‘Alameda’.

  • Name: Paseo Civico Metropolitano| Alameda Providencia Corridor.
  • Location: Santiago de Chile.
  • Year of Competition: 2015
  • Site: 12 Km length
  • Design Stages: On going
  • Client: Gobierno Regional Santiago de Chile
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Team: Groundlab. LyonBosch+Martic, Idom and Sergio Chiquetto
  • Status: 1st Prize

Weaving Landmark

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

The design continues and integrates, structurally and aesthetically, the telecommunications antenna into a single sinuous landmark whose profile transforms dynamically according to each individual point of view. The paths structure follows a diagonal grid structure that provides accessibility with minimum slopes and resting points as well as sustainable water infrastructure running alongside. It connects spatially - through the path network- and visually –each landmark in the city has a particular point of view of the tower- with Salerno. In the landing points, trees are added where necessary to protect from the sun and heat and the soil is retained with a wooden surface that serves also as furniture to create an intimate environment to rest and enjoy the landscape. The park is materialized with fully recyclable elements and compacted soil to reduce the costs and visual impact.

  • Name: Weaving Land-mark|scape. Bellaria Park and Antenna.
  • Location: Salerno, Italy.
  • Year of Competition: 2015
  • Site: 26 ha
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design.
  • Client: City of Salerno
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Structural Engineers: Vincenzo Reale, Giancarlo Torpiano
  • Status: Second prize

Skyline Master Plan

Category: Selected projects

Quadtree is proposed here as the concept for the landscape design in order to create comfortable outdoor areas to be inhabited at different times during the day and year. The concept enhances the existing grid and structure of the skyline master plan as the basis for a further subdivision into a smaller scale. The quadtree grid generates open, semi-open and enclosed modular spaces that can be used to create micro-climates at multiple scales, allowing a better control of the temperature and humidity in outdoor inhabitable zones such as the linear park and playground areas.The square prototypes/modules are designed as a catalogue that can be implemented on site linked to climatic conditions. The squares are related to shading and cooling techniques as well as local materials and create a material/pattern gradient in order to house different programmes and activities along the linear park and playground areas.

  • Name: Skyline Master Plan.
  • Design Team: Praxis (Architecture), Groundlab (Landscape Architecture)
  • Location: Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
  • Year of Implementation: 2015-16.
  • Site: 27.1579 ha
  • List of key functions and facilities: Hospital, Bridge, Park, Bolervard, Walking Paths.
  • Design Stages: Design Development, Detail Design
  • Client: Landscape Concultancy Praxis Architect.
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Status: Ongoing.

Sokolniki Park, Embassy of Nature

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

Embassy of Nature seeks to identify Sokolniki as the main Gateway to Nature in Moscow by linking the park with its surroundings and the Elk’s Island natural reserve. It does so by revamping the historical radial structure of the park to become the Eight Ways to Nature and by extending the ecological corridor to the south. The project is based on three principles that enhance the existing potentials of the park: its proximity to a natural reserve, the historical axial structure, its forest areas as well as the popular urban park next to the main entrance. The goal is to create a strong identity as an embassy of nature, to enhance its heritage of existing radial structure, to increase the accessibility of the park and its historical architectural elements together with the introduction of a diverse range of characters and activities in the forest as well as its historical structure.

  • Name: Conceptual Framework for the Development of the Sokolniki Park Territory.
  • Design Team: Wowhaus (Architecture), Groundlab (Landscape Urbanism)
  • Location: Moscow, Russia.
  • Year of Implementation: 2015-2020
  • List of Key Functions and Facilities: Sports, Cultural, Leisure, Educational and Environmental Activities within the park. Entrances, info points, cafes, shops, rental bikes.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design.
  • Client: City of Moscow.
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Status: First price competition.

Mobility Centre

Category: Selected projects

The project reorganizes the area around the train station due to its relocation closer to the city Centre. It involves the redesign of the station and all the infrastructural components such as , main crossing points for cars, pedestrians, bicycles and trains. At the same time the area in front of the old train station will be free up thus allowing the introduction of new programs with new activities for the town. The proposal uses this space to create a unique “Innichen showcase” where local products like bacon, mineral water, felt, linen, etc. are to be display. This territory works as a transition area and attraction for visitors and residents from the north of the municipality and beyond.

  • Name: Mobility Centre Master Plan for San Candido.
  • Design Team: Plasma Studio and Groundlab (Architecture and Landscape Urbanism)
  • Location: San Candido, Italy.
  • Year of Implementation: June, 2013- ongoing
  • List of Key Functions and Facilities: Train Station, Waiting Room, Post Office, Bike Rental, Bike Parking, Moto-Bike/ Car Parking, Public Facilities.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design, Design Development, Detail, Design, Tender Documentation.
  • Client: San Candido Municipality.
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Status: Ongoing.

Performing Grounds

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

Centenary Square is proposed as a two-fold, continuous stage that serves as meeting and performative public space. It uses the existing height level difference of the ground to choreograph a series of unique and integrated stages that perform as a catalyst linking the events happening in the surrounding buildings with the activities taking place in the plaza. A canal system is introduced as a water feature to collect and perform as open-air sustainable drainage. The proposal recycles the existing brick material (crushed brick bound with cement – similar to terrazzo -) that becomes a continuous carpet with various densities and gradients to lead and invite people to the gathering and event spaces.

  • Name: Performing grounds. People’s stage in Centenary Square
  • Location: Birmingham, UK.
  • Year of Competition: 2014
  • Site: 2.034 ha
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design.
  • Client: City of Birmingham
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.

Beijing Garden

Category: Selected projects

The concept comes from a mission of fabricating an experience both intimate and intense combined with a strong feeling of harmony with the environment and intimate contemplation. The concepts finds its precedents within the SouZhou gardens tradition, such as the rock, the outcrop, the occidental equivalent of the grotto, and the use hanging and sunken gardens. The result is a combination of intense distortions of the ground and an acute sense of three dimensionality, where one feels itself draped by concrete, steel and vegetation, free to explore a thickened version of a microcosm in a series of pocket landscapes for reflection, relaxation and ultimate playfulness.

  • Name: Beijing Gardens.
  • Location: 15 Shejichang Rd., Fengtai District, Beijing, China.
  • Year of Implementation: April, 2013.
  • Site: 0.9 Ha of Landscape.
  • List of Key Functions and Facilities: Public Path Network, Pocket Gardens.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design, Design Development, Detail, Design, Tender Documentation.
  • Client: Beijing International Garden Expo Construction Headquarters.
  • Project Implementation Budget: 1,300,000 RMB.

Flowing Gardens

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

GroundLab in collaboration with Plasma Studio, were successful in winning this international competition following invitation, with a radical self-sustainable vision for the future. The project entitled Flowing Gardens creates constant functionality using water, planting, circulation and architecture harmonized into one seamless system. The proposal comprises of a 5000 sm Exhibition Hall, a 4000 sm Greenhouse and a 3500 sm Gate Building sitting in a 37 ha landscape that will house the International Horticultural Expo and create a park for Xi’an City as its legacy. The opening was in 2011, and is expected to receive approximately 15 million visitors.

  • Name: Flowing Gardens, Xi’an International Horticultural Fair 2011.
  • Design Team: Plasma Studio (Architecture), Groundlab (Landscape Urbanism)
  • Location: Changba Ecological District, Xi’an, China.
  • Year of Implementation: Built, April 2011.
  • Site: 37 Ha of Landscape and 15,000 sqm of Buildings.
  • Capacity: 300, 000 visitors per day.
  • List of key functions and facilities: Horticultural Fair, Public Park, Amphitheatre, Landbridge Connection, Exhibition areas, Greenhouse, Water Taxi and boats mooring, Creative Pavilion, Access Plaza.
  • Design Stages of Groundlab and Plasmastudio involvement: Concept Design, Schematic Design, Design Development, Detail, Design, Tender Documentation, Site Supervision.
  • Client: Changba Ecological District Development Agency
  • Project Implementation Budget: 500, 000, 000 RMB

Thickened Waterfront

Category: Selected projects
Client: Xian Municipality

The pavilion is part of the Horticultural Fair that took place in Xian from April to October 2011. The project was a invitation to develop a small piece of landscape able to reflect the principles and concepts developed in the Landscape Urbanism unit at the AA. The pavilion uses the water and the ground as the main drivers for the design. The ground was manipulated (folded, thickened, ) to allow the inland and lake water to run through the inner space by means of water inlets, pools, canals expanding the water experience into the hard and soft landscape: next to benches, paths and plating areas in a seamless design.

  • Name: Thickened Waterfront
  • Design Team: Architectural Association Landscape Urbanism and Groundlab (Landscape Urbanism)
  • Location: Xian, China
  • Year of Competition: 2009
  • Site: 100 Ha of Landscape and 5,000 sqm of Buildings.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design, Construction Stage
  • Client: Changba Ecological District Development Agency

Restorations of Naples Zoo

Category: Selected projects

The concept of immersion design is to bring animals and guests within their natural environment habitat or landscape. Animals are separated by sunken fences and people move through skywalks thus allowing as much space as possible for animals and the best views for people. The proposal also considers the integration of the existing heritage buildings from the fascist age on the site while maintaining its aesthetic identity. This strategy attemps to put value on historical buildings and at the same time, take advantage of the existing facilities for the new development. Man-made structures along the pathways serve as interpretive “nodes” in which visitors can learn more about animals and their conservation in the best possible conditions for animals, people and buildings.

  • Name: Masterplan for the redevelopment of Napoli Zoo.
  • Location: Napoli, Italy.
  • Year of Implementation: 2013
  • Site: 9 Ha.
  • Capacity: 10,000 visitors/day approx.
  • List of Key Functions and Facilities: Buildings, Infrastructural bridges and connexions, Pocket gardens, Cages.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design.
  • Client: Societa' Mediapolis S.p.A..
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Status: Ongoing.

Recovering Waterscapes: Ravine landscapes Management Programe

Category: Selected projects

Mexico City sits on a valley, home to a rich network of lakes, wetlands and rivers. This complex ecology is almost extinct due to a relentless urban development which threats the viability of Mexico City while denying its inhabitants access to an inherently per-formative landscape. The project proposes the recovery of the ravines, the last and primal bastions of the water ecosystem which nowadays co-exist with the city. Through a multi-scalar approach, it fosters local and punctual interventions with metropolitan implications. It ensures the re-integration of ravines into the urban fabric through the engagement and interlocking of responsibilities from various agencies, communities and neighbours.

  • Name: Barrancas Management Program and Prototypes.
  • Design Team: Territorios Arquitectura (Planning), Groundlab (Architecture and Landscape Urbanism)
  • Location: Mexico, Mexico City.
  • Year of Implementation: 2013.
  • Site: 230 Ha
  • List of key functions and facilities: Community Centre, Cultivation Gardens, Library, Restaurant, Walking Paths.
  • Design Stages: Terrain and Climatic Analysis, Concept Design, Schematic Design.
  • Client: Mexico City Municipality.
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Status: Ongoing.

Latent Landscape Chalco

Category: Selected projects

Latent Landscapes proposes the use and rethinking of the linear structure of the streets of Chalco. This vital space consolidates it as urban fabric, through the use of its natural ability to collect and distribute water in the territory. This proposal is strengthened by means of the generation of a hybrid drainage system extended throughout its territory with different intensities. The system regulates -infrastructurally- water during the rainy season, generates -scenically- green spaces and linear parks with minimal maintenance and reinforces -socially- existing public spaces, flea markets, trade corridors, pedestrian walk, etc.

  • Name: Latent Landscapes
  • Design Team: Architectural Association Visiting School Mexico City (Landscape Urbanism), Groundlab (Architecture, Landscape Urbanism)
  • Location: Mexico, Mexico City.
  • Year of Implementation: July 2012.
  • Site: 300Ha
  • List of key functions and facilities: Community Centre, Cultivation Gardens, Walking Paths, Sport Facilities, Public Street Realm.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design
  • Client: Private
  • Project Implementation Budget: NA.
  • Status: Ongoing.

Terraced Ecologies

Category: Selected projects

The concept of the park is based on the existing and TRADITIONAL TERRACES of the Cyprus and more specifically Latsia landscape which become the foundations for a SUSTAINABLE WATER MANAGEMENT SYSTEM, essential for the maintenance of a park given the Mediterranean climatological conditions. It consists on the consolidation of Pallourokampos’ existing terraces that define the park’s configuration. These terraces allow not only the management of the slope and water but they generate an intrinsic spatial relation between the park activities, the landscape and the views.

  • Name: Restoration of Park Pallourokampou
  • Location: Latsia, Cyprus
  • Year of Competition: 2012
  • Site: 9 Ha of Landscape and 2,000 sqm of Buildings
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design
  • Client: Latsia Municipality
  • Status:  3rd Prize

Multiplying Grounds

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

Landscape, ground and nature will become increasingly important to future users and through its location, perfect symmetry and the axial and programmatic relationships to the surrounding urban grain, this new park is destined to become a major place to go meet and enjoy an extended range of activities in addition to the classical recreational functions and value. Our project is developed to enhance the given framework, highlight the axis and develop a central meeting place in a contemporary, dynamic and exciting way. Starting from the fact that Astana is located on the intersection of East and West and exponentially develops as a major link between those cultural and economic spheres, our intention is to make the park into a place where this is symbolized and can be experienced too.

  • Description: International Competition
  • Client: Astana Municipality
  • Location: Astana, Kazakhstan
  • Year of implementation: 2011
  • Site: 100 Ha of Landscape and 5,000 sqm of Buildings
  • Capacity: 100, 000 visitors per day
  • Design stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design.
  • Status: 3RD prize

Taichung Gateway Park

Category: Selected projects

The reason for a park is that of providing a chance to weave the cityscape of our urban environments with ecologies and places with entirely different character. In this sense, the park weaves distant and local territories into the ultimate form of metropolitan experience, helping to forge character and long term vision of the entire city. The design of this park in Taichung becomes the key to produce a resolutely cosmopolitan and distinct experience for gateway development and, up to a certain extent, the entire city. in a nutshell, weaving shall become the main concept to turn the landscape of Gateway Park into the strongest form of urbanism.

  • Name: Taichung Park Gateway.
  • Location: Taichung, Taiwan.
  • Year of Competition: 2011.
  • Site: 50 Ha.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design.
  • Client: Taichung Municipality.
  • Status: International Competition, Shortlisted.

Andermatt Master Plan

Category: Selected projects

The proposal is based on the prominence of the land as a mediator between the eidetic tourists’ expectations, the actual infrastructure and the spatial development patterns, under the influence of the contemporary realities and demands of the 21st Century. The question is how to translate such situation from the supposed problem into an identity and relevant local presence as it can be. The project acknowledges the Alps and its massive presence and morphology as a reference, and proposes and connective network that mediate this landscape, the required programme and the necessary infrastructure to make it happen. Delta project operates as a solid base for an authentic material architecture and infrastructural urbanism to response to Andermatt local conditions and necessities.

  • Name: Delta, Andermatt, Switzerland
  • Design Team: Plasma Studio (Architecture), Groundlab (Landscape Architecture)
  • Type: International Competition for the Andermatt Master Plan 2011
  • Client:  Andermatt Municipality
  • Date: June 2011
  • Credits: Alfredo Ramirez, Eva Castro, Zhuo Li, Marta Postigo, Ignacio Gias with Holger Kehne
  • Status: Shortlisted

Ground Ecologies

Category: Selected projects

Ground Ecologies is a winning competition entry for the redevelopment of the Jia Ding District. The site is located in the outer area of Shanghai City and is part of the greater master plan of the city to develop peripheral new districts that can cope with the rapid urban development and the need to provide residential and mix-used areas with direct access to the city centre. The competition called for the transformation of the industrial site into a high dense residential area boost by the newly open metro line station, placed in the border of the site and a highway. These infrastructures will ensure direct and close connections to the centre of Shanghai, allowing Jia Ding district to become an important local centre and a realistic alternative for Shanghai urban development in the near future.

  • Name: Ground Ecologies
  • Location: Shanghai, China.
  • Year of Implementation: 2010.
  • Site: 5 Km2
  • Capacity: 50, 000 inhabitants.
  • List of Key Functions and Facilities: Residential Masterplanning with mix-used, commerce, residential and Business District Center.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design, Design Development.
  • Client: Shanghai planning Bureau.
  • Status: 1st Prize

Parque de la Ciudadania

Category: Competitions

The concept was developed in order to interweave different historical moments and material realities of the City of Santiago in general and the Sport’s Park in particular. To carry out this synthesis we considered two preliminary readings: on the one hand the existing spatial organization, related to the sport’s activities, and on the other the current morphology of the territory. While the former translates itself into a clear orthogonal north -south grid, the second follows the ‘natural’ movement of water along existing slopes, giving birth to a new, interwoven, spatial organisation that produces an enhanced character of the site. The project is the result of a careful negotiation between existing materials and programmes on site. In this way, our proposal can be understood as a machinic landscape, where water becomes a per-formative infrastructure that serves the necessities of the daily park’s activities and thus creates an aesthetic quality directly linked to the performance of its landscape.

  • Name: Interwoven Ecologies, Special Mention
  • Type: International Competition to redevelop “Parque de la Ciudadania” Sport’s Centre
  • Client: Santiago de Chile Municipality
  • Date: 2010
  • Credits: Groundlab + Lyon Bosch

Deep Ground

Category: Competitions, Selected projects
Client: Shenzhen Planning Buerau

Deep Ground is GroundLab’s winning entry for the international design competition for Longgang Centre and Longcheng Square. The project deals with the regeneration of 11.8 Km2 of the urban fabric in the centre of Longgang, north east of ShenZhen in the Pearl River Delta, with estimated population of 350,000 and 9,000,000 m2 of new development. The project radically expands the scope of urbanism in order to deal with the contemporary challenges of modern China: through the concept of ‘thickened ground’ multiple ground datums are fused to foster intuitive orientation and connectivity. The polluted and neglected river will become an ecological corridor, whilst the existing Urban Villages are retained to form nucleuses to lend identity, vitality and human scale to the new development.

  • Name: Master Plan for the redevelopment of Longgang City
  • Location: Longgang City, Shenzhen, China.
  • Year of Implementation: 2008.
  • Site: 11 km2
  • Capacity: 250, 000 inhabitants.
  • Design Stages: Concept Design, Schematic Design, Design Development, Detail, Design.
  • Client: Shenzhen Planning Bureau.
  • Status: 1st Prize


Category: Competitions, Selected projects

Ground_n is a ‘Park- terrain’ interface, joining the disconnected adjacent urban fabric on one scale, and connecting multiple moulds of earth and built form on another. The overall strategy seeks to reformulate the notion of ‘ground’ as an operational tool that beyond establishing the traditional vertical linkage among levels, it actively weaves through the levels, generating an amalgam that defines diversity through gradients rather than through separation and stratification of layers. The built mass is distributed through a series of bands that enhance the continuity of the existing fabric to the west, thus promoting urban porosity -movement and exchange, and the possibility of further growth to the east. The project tries to acquire certain intensity with a typology composed of one to five storey bands generating an overall built ratio of 0.7.

Xisi Bei Development

Category: Competitions, Selected projects

Xisi Bei district is one of the 25 hutong protected zones in Central Beijing and as such is subjected to this development pressure that is leading its “siheyuan” typology into extinction with the traditional urban life being reduced and in certain cases eliminated. The project proposal attempts to use this traditional system of urban organization as a basis and starting point for the reinterpretation and growth of Xisi Bei area. This is achieved through building a catalogue of a generative typology of four- combine- gardens upon the concept of probability, consequently breeding a wide domain of modular arrangement onto the block of Xisi Bei.

Groundlab at FRAC Centre Opening

Category: Exhibitions

This is Groundlab contribution to Archilab 9th. Thanks to Groundlab Leila Meroue for the production of all models and Emmanuelle Chiappone, Marie-Ange Brayer and Frédéric Migayrou for the opportunity to take part on this project.

Flowing Gardens, Barcelona, Landscape Biennale

Category: Exhibitions

The project Flowing Gardens was selected for an exhibition part of the Landscape European Biennal that took place in Barcelona September 2012.

Cartographic Grounds, GSD, Harvard

Category: Exhibitions

Cartographic Grounds reconciles the precision and instrumentality of the plan with the geographic and territorial implications of the map. In light of the ascendance of “mapping” and data visualization in design culture, and the privileging of abstract forces and flows, the exhibition re-imagines the projective potential of cartographic practices that afford greater proximity to the manifestation and manipulation of the ground itself. The approaches presented here offer landscape architecture a long-overdue reconciliation of the depiction of the ground as a site of design with the geological and geographic, the regional and the territorial. They provide contemporary design practice with clues to the imaginative intersection of the material and the digital, the data-driven and the experiential. Groundlab is taking part of the exhibition with the “Flowing Gardens” project.  More Info about the exhibition

Prototipos Urbanos, Centro Cultural de España, Ciudad de México

Category: Exhibitions

Alfredo Ramirez curated the exhibition called: Prototipos Urbanos. The exhibition aimed at showing relevant projects currently being developed in Mexico City at an urban scale. All projects are linked to the idea of recovering water landscape in Mexico City such as rivers, lakes, wetlands and also to the implementation of transport networks and their repercussion in the public space in the city.

“From academia to Praxis” Recent projects, Art House, Teheran, Iran

Category: Exhibitions

The work of  Groundlab was shown in Teheran Arts House in December 2010. The work featured panels and models of research work  by Groundlab. Hossein Kachabi was the curator of this exhibition called “From Academia to Praxis”.

Recent projects, Hong Kong/Shenzhen Biennale 2007-08

Category: Exhibitions

The work of Groundlab together with the work of AA Landscape Urbanism 2004-2007  was shown in the c-6 pavillion on the Hong Kong – ShenZhen Biennale from December 2007 to March 2008. The work features panels and models of research work by student works as well as design work undertaken under the Groundlab Collective, linking academy to professional realm.

Flowing Gardens, Expo Xian

Category: Media