A Renovated Square in El Cardón

  • Location:
    El Cardón - Caracas, Venezuela
  • Date:
    2019
  • Client:
    Caracas Mi Convive and the Swiss Embassy in Venezuela
  • Team:
    Enlace Fundación and Enlace Arquitectura
  • Photography:
    Enlace Arquitectura
  • share in

El Cardón is an informal settlement that is part of Antimano in the Libertador Municipality of eastern Caracas. A soup kitchen that is part of a program called “Alimenta La Solidaridad” by the NGO Caracas MiConvive has been working there since 2017 serving children in the neighborhood who otherwise would not receive a balanced meal every day. Children do not have areas where they can play safely in the community and so after seeing so many neighborhood kids concentrate in the areas near the soup kitchen, neighbors through it would be a good idea to create a playground for them nearby. The topography of the site is very difficult, with steep slopes and scarce open spaces available for physical interventions.

A site where neighbor had taken up the habit of throwing waste, which was occasionally picked up by a municipal waste collection service, became an opportunity for a playground. They decided to clear the waste site and use the adjacent hill to create an intervention using slides over natural slopes for children to play. The project includes a slide, a see-saw, and a bench for adults to look out onto views of the city. Neighbors have agreed to manage waste in a different manner, collaborating closely with the waste collection drivers to only bring their non-recyclable waste out only when the truck arrives, eliminating the need for a fixed place to gather them beforehand. Recycling efforts have been introduced in the community through collaboration with a private initiative.