Interactive collective spaces in the El Chaco communities (Paraguay)- the Filadefia case

This project aims to discuss and raise awareness on the specific complex development issues of the indigenous peoples, migrant Latino’s and Mennonites in the Chaco area where the issue of accelerated economic transformation and displacement of indigenous groups requires deeper reflection and discussion on the part of society as a whole with a view to the construction of a common future. Using the interest of students in architecture and urbanism on the design of collective spaces and to place them in the global south to understand some of the development issues at ground level and will empower them to engage in the development cooperation debate in a critical way.

This project analyses the different existing public/collective spaces (formal and informal spaces, gathering and public spaces, markets, sports, etc) that are present and used in Filadelfia and Kolonie Neuland in a comparative way. It is very crucial that, in relation to the importance of local cultural & social sustainability, designers and researchers comprehend those aspects, understand how those systems are functioning, and how the link between the use of existing buildings, the social construct and collective spaces is being established, involving the local communities.

The aim is to understand and explore people’s daily experiences. It investigates the intertwined elements of space-production, place-making and identities focusing on the use of public and collective spaces. Linked to the needs of the poorer indigenous and Latino population, an urban design strategy for the development of spaces that could help social and cultural development and integration to take place with in mind the importance of local identities and place making.

It intends to use this understanding to design innovative and practical social sustainable proposals/strategies for the future.

promoters (Yves Schoonjans & Jeroen Nys (KU Leuven, Belgium) – Juan Cristaldo & Ivan Vera (FADA-CIDI, Paraguay)
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The project is supported by the research group ‘Urban Projects, Collective Spaces and Local Identities’ ( ).KU, CIDI (Centro de Investigation Desarollo e Innovacion) of the Facultad de Arquitectura, Diseño y Arte, Universidad Nacional de Asunción, Paraguay and their research project called: “Infrastructure and Territorial transformations in Paraguay – 1960 -2014”. (