cocó state park | 3rd place


1 – The recognition of the importance of the daily and symbolic appropriation of public spaces by people in intense and diverse ways. The urban and landscape restructuring takes as its starting point the various forms of use of public spaces in Cocó Park, considering both the population residing in upscale areas and in the surrounding popular neighborhoods adjacent to the park. Additionally, it takes into account the tourists, who are constantly present in the city and are associated with a significant economic activity. The appropriation of public spaces in Cocó Park in various ways, by different people, on different days of the week and at different times of the day, was a guiding principle of this proposal. It is considered that these factors can ensure greater longevity of public facilities, increased urban security, and collective recognition that public resources have been invested in the well-being of citizens. Intensely used public spaces are the hallmark of cities that prioritize the dimension of public and urban life and invariably have happier citizens;

2 – Inverting the city’s relationship with the Cocó River. The city of Fortaleza developed with its back turned to the Cocó River. The intense process of urbanization that marked the city’s growth in recent decades, particularly in urban areas on both sides of the river, was characterized by real estate speculation and large-scale transport infrastructure projects. Little attention was given to the Cocó River and its environmental protection areas. A city that grows with its back to a watercourse that traverses it often turns it into a mere destination for sanitary effluents and solid waste. Thus, the river becomes an element sometimes invisible, sometimes unpleasant for everyday urban life. To reverse this relationship, it is necessary to make the city embrace the river and take care of its environmental condition. Therefore, this proposal aims to turn the city towards the river, making the entire environmental protection area visible and establishing various forms of relationship between people and the Cocó environmental complex;

3 – The Park as an element of articulation and not as a barrier. The enormous area that constitutes section 01 of Cocó State Park – the subject of this competition – represents a very significant non-urbanized area, with over a thousand hectares, in the middle of the city of Fortaleza. As expected, this vast area containing not only the Cocó River but also lakes, extensive river plains, mangroves, forested areas, and streams has become a huge urban barrier. As the eastward growth of the city advanced, and continues to advance, the Cocó Valley became an obstacle to be overcome. This proposal seeks to create conditions for the Park to become an element of urban articulation, especially in relation to pedestrian and cycling modes, facilitating daily routes, shortening distances, favoring crossings, and allowing leisure and ecotourism routes;

4 – Careful consideration of preexistences. The urban areas surrounding Cocó Park constitute a vast diversity of social strata, cultures, and environmental landscapes. This proposal sought to value and enhance cultural preexistences, the appropriation of existing public spaces, and the different ways of life in the various areas around the park, especially in the seventeen proposed intervention areas;

5 – Sustainable urban development. An urban and landscape intervention of such scope, modifying various already consolidated urban areas and changing the lives of so many people, must have a strong commitment to the notion of Sustainable Urban Development. This translates into the idea that it is necessary to allow the economic development of the city without compromising environmental preservation and social responsibility. The pursuit of the difficult balance between these three dimensions – economic, environmental, and social – is the only way to guarantee an urban intervention that will improve the lives of the poorer population residing in the areas near the Cocó River, ensure the environmental preservation of the entire area, and still enable the economic development of the city.