Una unità elementare nella Valle dei Templi di Agrigento
In: U+D urbanform and design: 14, 2020
The essay proposes a reflection on a possible way of the contemporary inhabiting based on the idea of the elementary unit as formally defined part that, in its finitude, opens itself to the possibility not so much of an enlargement in continuity but of a repetition, if interposed by natural gaps, within an hypothesis of “city by islands” or “archipelago-city”. This idea was developed
through a didactic activity of two Architectural Design studios in the Department of Architecture of Federico II University of Naples.
The pretext of this work is the participation of the two studios to the national network of the first-year Laboratories of Architectural Design IncipitLab, promoted by the University of Palermo, that proposed, in a partially different way if related to the previous academic years, a comparison not on the same theme but on a shared place. The study-area is the Valle dei Templi of the ancient Akragas – the Greek name of the ancient Agrigento – whose characteristics were investigated through codified tools of urban analysis, widening the gaze to the territory where the valley is an absolute singularity, moreover exactly in the dialogue with the modern city on the Girgenti hill and, above all, with an exceptional landscape condition that not even the insensitive man hand was able to completely cancelled. The project-area is a squared platform, with a side of sixty meters, in a strict relationship to the west with the ruins of the Temple of Zeus, to the north with the traces of the insulae and to the south with the Temple of Hercules.
Here the theme of the construction of an “elementary unit” has been tackled, a kind of agora/forum able to join the “way of delimitation” and that of openness, establishing, at a wider scale, a relation at distance with the huge archaeological artefacts in a sort of triangulation of topological type.
A work that, even if not intervening in the living body of the city, represents a reasoning on the urban forms used by “analogy”.
Keywords: archaeology, analogy, elementary part, Agrigento.