La Costeta Park. A Mediterranean Woodland

AMB

Architects: AMB (Montserrat Periel, Sara Ferrer, Joan Castellví)
Location: Begues, Spain
Year: 2016 - 2019
Photography: Santiago Periel

La Costeta Park is a relatively dense Mediterranean woodland, an isolated hill within the urban growth of Begues with boundaries clearly defined by the streets and residential plots. Its condition before the intervention showed a lack of maintenance, which along with the inaccessible paths due to the steep slopes made it an uninviting space.

The preliminary overall plan for the park involved recognising the specific natural character of the various areas in the wood, due to their aspect, topography, geology and the memory of the place: the copse, the sunny area, the shady area, the terraces, the rocks and El Grec. This phase established the guidelines for a new way of exploring, experiencing and enjoying this wooded area, prioritising and protecting native tree species.

Several rest areas around the park resulted by restoring and consolidating the old terraces and low walls, some accessible linear paths were created along the winding contour lines between the existing trees, and sections of stairs were added perpendicularly into the topography as shortcuts.

Leisure activities were also included as alternative routes: three slides embedded in the terrain like the course of a stream, coming down through the shaded woody area, and the climbing wood, mimicking old tree trunks, as a leisure activity for discovering the copse area.

The treatment of the perimeter of the park where it meets the adjoining streets is crucial in the new park’s relationship with its surroundings. Corten steel walls contain the earth in places where a natural embankment is impossible, conceal utility cabinets, and provide access to three of the main entrances to the new park.

The project provides the highest architectural quality, with a design for an inclusive and functional public space for people, with a clear commitment to sustainable green spaces. Maximum water infiltration is achieved with pavements of consolidated sandstone, sandstone, bark, topsoil and the terrain itself. Species native to the woodland are replanted, and LED lighting is added to ensure accessible and safe spaces.

La Costeta Park is a detailed project that respects nature and has a complex construction process, as it is a wooded terrain with abundant existing vegetation, topographical irregularities and significant slopes.