An Alternative Future for the Landscapes of Castilla-La Mancha
Editor: Carl Steinitz Editor: Christian Werthmann, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, 2007
Sponsors: Foro Civitas Nova, Toledo, Spain
The book is the result of a semester-long studio about the future of a 200km by 70km corridor in the autonomous region of Castilla-La Mancha, the heart of Spain. It was produced by twelve students from the masters and postgraduate programs of the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University under the oversight ofthe class instructors Professors Carl Steinitz and Christian Werthmann.
Spain as a country is undergoing massive changes. In the effort to create a balanced transportation network over the whole country, Spains highway system and high-speed rail network is rapidly expanding, and reconfiguring the relations among its urban centers in Spain and to Europe. The accelerated growth of Madrid into a multimillion person metropolis with enormous demands for developable land deeply affects its surrounding regions including its southern neighbour, Castilla-La Mancha. The landscapes of Castilla-La Mancha are dominated by agriculture and interspersed with small to mid-sized towns, and were for hundreds of years left fairly untouched by the nearby metropolis. For centuries, the sparse and dry lands of the elevated plain shaped the cities, culture and society of this region. With the pressure of recent urbanization and sprawling infrastructure build-out, Castilla-La Mancha is on the verge of a vast shift in the historic relationships between its built structure and its landscapes which will radically transform the identity of the region into a new, yet-tobe-defined entity.
At this significant point in time, the study An Alternative Future for the Landscapes of Castilla-La Mancha examines a corridor of land uses that offers a representative range of urbanization phenomena currently occurring in the region. Beginning in the north at the outskirts of Madrid, the corridor extends past the historic former capital city of Spain, Toledo, to the south at Ciudad Real, comprising a total area of about 14,000 square kilometers. Projecting land use shifts along a twenty year horizon, the study includes a vision for an alternative future for the region that proposes both policies and designs and offers site specific solutions for particular significant locales within the corridor.
Kevin Bunker, Chih-Wei Chang, Dharshini Joseph, Kris Lucius, Scott Melbourne, Anchalee Phaosawasdi, Adalie Pierce-McManamon, John Ridenour, Ruth Silver, Jose Juan Terrasa-Soler, Anne Vaterlaus, Julia Watson
Juan Carlos Vargas Moreno