Architectural workshop for Polish and Moldovan students of artistic and design studies was held in the village of Palanca (Calarasi Region) with the aim of realizing of a spatial project – installation in the public space of Palanca that would become an example of modern and inclusive architecture as well a symbol of the region. Participants of the workshop facilitated by the +48 Architecture Studio from Warsaw were all asked to search for design solutions promoting social inclusion and cultural participation of the particularly vulnerable social groups – elderly, children and persons with disabilities.
As a result, several exemplary pieces of inclusive contemporary architecture were constructed: stairs with railing as support for the elderly, a platform, which could be used to leave a stroller and as a place to rest, a bench with a wonderful view of the countryside and a notice-board for the local community located in the main part of the village next to Orthodox church, cemetery and museum – all developed as a part of an universal architecture design, accessible to all, regardless of age, ability or social status.
The workshop was a starting point for the discussion about access limitations to contemporary culture in Moldova and social inclusion in the context of public space. How to use inclusive architecture to solve social problems in the urban or rural areas? How to design an architectural product and adapt its environment in a way to be both accessible to all and aesthetic?
Those were the key questions of the conference addressed to young architects, designers and construction students organized within the project at the Facultatea Urbanism și Arhitectură of Universitatea Tehnică a Moldovei in Chisinau with the participation of +48 Architecture Studio, NM Studio, Kontent and facilitated by the Development Policy Foundation experts – sharing the best Polish practices in the field of providing inclusive solutions in architecture understood not as ‘no barriers’ but rather as a ‘design philosophy’.
The project was implemented by the Development Policy Foundation thanks to the grant awarded by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage in the frame of the ‘Promoting Polish Culture Abroad 2017 Promesa’ programme, as one in the series of soeas + y projects using an architectural workshop as an effective social capital boosting working method – ensuring residents involvement with added educational value for students as a future urban space change maker.