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Conservation and Enhancement of Urban Natural Habitats

Part 1 Dissertation 2014
Anca Pasat
Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism | Romania
The dissertation aims to present and analyse urban natural habitats, so that it might point out the importance of protecting, preserving and harnessing them, in order to reestablish the balance in dysfunctional urban environments. The goal of this study is to highlight the complex relationships of interdependency which develop between the components of the town considered from an ecosytemic point of view, and to generate the awareness of anthropic impact in this context.

One of the objectives of this study is to demonstrate, by analysing actual examples from throughout European countries, the possibility of including, as a matter of course, the natural environment in the urban life of a city, as a result of a holistic and coherent approach.

Moreover, the paper endeavours to study a practical example, i.e., the Vacaresti area, as a significant component of Bucharest’s urban ecosystem. The final purpose of the dissertation is to explore means of giving a new identity to this area, which has been mutilated through the brutal interventions of the communist era. After the demolition of the Vacaresti monastery (an important landmark in the past), the area was allocated to become an artificial reservoir, but since the 1989 revolution, the site has been abandoned for 25 years. Meanwhile, nature developed a rich and valuable wetland ecosystem within the embankment, which lead the Romanian government to grant the area the status of protected zone, this year, on 29th April.

Last but not least, the dissertation intends to investigate means of enhancing natural habitats through architecture, thus laying the foundation stone of my personal graduation project – the proposal of a visitor and biodiversity research centre for the soon-to-be (hopefully) Vacaresti nature park. Therefore, as a result of the issues it addresses, this essay attempts to prove the necessity of implementing these concepts in Bucharest, in Vacaresti area, trigerring its regeneration and resulting in better cohabitation between man and nature.

Anca Pasat

Horia-Radu Moldovan
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