eme3 2011 Exhibit Catalog

Photo © AGENCY 2012

View AGENCY’s contribution to the eme3 2011 Exhibition Catalog online here.  An excerpt from the text, entitled “Hackable Infrastructures”, is copied below.

‘Metropolitan Rome is a vibrant and dynamic collision of the pressures of globalization, urbanization, and migration. With the influx of populations escaping recent political conflicts, and the continued development of long-existing communities outside the legitimate power structures of the city, tens of thousands are struggling to find a place in the urban construct. The city is facing an informal housing crisis.

But the form of the city is fluid, and a wide array of informal settlements and structures persist within the formal city fabric. In the periphery, much of the urban form is ‘unplanned’, driven by the ever-changing conditions of the market, speculative development, and ‘abusive’ construction. Informal settlements, once a negligible and overlooked part of the city, are escalating in scale and intensity, and are dictating future development. In this ever-shifting milieu, the planning structures of the municipality must respond to increasingly complex flows of populations, capital, and commerce.

The project considers both the “top-down” formal planning practices of metropolitan Rome, and the abundance of “bottom-up” informal approaches to urban life, to elaborate upon the emerging articulation of the city’s margins, and suggest alternative futures. By extrapolating the successful tactics of existing communities, we find opportunities for inclusion and exchange within an urban fabric seemingly caught in stalemate.’