Visioning and Planning Al Wastani and the future urbanization of Saida
The Municipality of Saida is currently engaged in a large-scale urban intervention that seeks to urbanize one of its last remaining green areas. While this step responds to the growing pressures for building, it is the Municipality's strong belief that this should be conducted in a framework that respects the long-term ecological, social, and economic sustainability of the city.
This project forms part of Saida Urban Sustainable Development Strategy that was developed under the USUDS project by a team of highly qualified experts, in consultation with local stakeholders. The Municipality's ambition is now to build on the USUDS with a set of integrated urban interventions, including the Wastani Plain planning and future urbanisation.
On June 14-16, 2014, The Municipality of Saida and the Directorate General of Urban Planning- Saida brought together students from several Lebanese universities with public authorities, architects, planners, and designers to participate in a three-day design and planning charette that would engage these actors in a participatory forum that articulates visions for the future development of the city's Wastani zone. Over three days, students and university professors discussed the possible forms of interventions, areas to be protected, strengthened, and re-imagined.
By publishing the outcomes of this workshop, this document seeks to initiate a public debate on the ongoing urban interventions in the City of Saida. Starting with the premise that an informed public debate about the possibilities of urban transformations is a key element for successful planning, the document introduces the interventions of a handful of scholars and student projects for public debate. At no point should the texts and images that follow be read as conclusive statements.