Darsena PopUp by Officina Meme Architetti in the port of Ravenna - ISPLORA
darsena pop up port ravenna officina meme isplora

Darsena PopUp: in Ravenna as in New York


The project Darsena PopUp renovated the Port of Ravenna by using shipping containers and wooden structures

The former Artificerie Almagià warehouse was the starting point for the project to bring new life to the port of Ravenna, a social activation action, strongly linked to the port identity. Darsena PopUp, by the firm Officina Meme, is an innovative intervention for temporary reuse aimed at creating a new sports and recreational center, which acts as a social activator and attraction, based on three key concepts: sociality, innovation and sustainability.

Darsena PopUp: temporary reuse of a public space through sport, businesses and research and innovation

Promoted by the Associazione Culturale Naviga in Darsena, which has been pursuing the regeneration of the port of Ravenna for over a decade, the project Darsena PopUp represents the first example of temporary reuse of a private, abandoned area, in the port of Ravenna

The project recalls the artistic and poetic dimension of industrial places and materials, and gives the city of Ravenna an international connotation, evoking Brooklyn Bridge Park in New York or the NDSM Werf neighborhood in Amsterdam, where the regeneration of abandoned industrial areas has given life to cultural centers, a sports park – in the case of New York – and a neighborhood for artists in the Dutch case, a meeting point for residents and tourists.

Darsena PopUp is in an area of about 4.000 sqm, previously used as a stone and wood warehouse, and it reuses 28 shipping containers from the port, which become the stage of new spaces for social and recreational activities, aimed at creating a new cultural center with services for the entire city, connecting the urban center and the Darsena

The design intervention includes small interventions with light wooden structures, which integrate into the containers, the protagonists of the new DarsenaThe project by Studio Officina MEME is in fact aimed at enhancing the port identity thanks to the reuse of shipping containers that are at the center of a functional and heterogeneous scenario. Reactivation takes place thanks to the interaction of sports and recreational activities, businesses, research and innovation.

The new PopUp sports center includes many spaces dedicated to the most different sports: from summer Beach Volley courts, to Basket and Beach Tennis courts, to Outdoor Fitness, Skate parks, Climbing and Parkour facilities. Food also offers many options, from container-restaurants, to cafes, ice-cream parlors and pizza places. There are many spaces for associations and professionals in the creative and cultural sector, such as Radio Immaginaria, a cooking school, a shared bookstore and a space for exhibitions.

Darsena PopUp: an “incremental” project born from public-private collaborations

Darsena PopUp is an “incremental” project, as “time” is the key factor that determines the growth and revitalization of the area, with a series of progressive phases that, thanks to public participation, aim to revitalize the port of Ravenna, turning it into an extraordinary place in everyday life. Paolo Monduzzi, president of the Associazione Culturale Naviga in Darsena, promoter of the project Darsena PopUp, said: 

The city Darsena is the trace of a commercial port whose heart was here, with ships, busy docks, a dedicated railways system and trades of all types, the result of over a decade of awareness-raising campaigns. This area was the foundation stone of Ravenna’s identity and economy, and is currently going through a transition phase, abandoning its old productive function and turning into the beating heart of the city’s development. In this context, the will of those who have always believed and worked in the port is to bet on the social relaunch of the Darsena, as the only way to activate and enhance the entire neighborhood.

The project by Officina MEME is part of Ravenna GREEN PORT, a three-year research and technology transfer project for the sustainable development of the Port of Ravenna, co-financed by the Regione Emilia-Romagna and the Ministry of Economic Development. Therefore, Darsena PopUp, is the result of a shared journey of private and public investments by local authorities, which allowed to create a place that can trigger activation processes in the community.

A project that lives for and thanks to the people that animate it, an intervention with a high social impact and a controlled economic investment, converting abandoned spaces to turn them into places that are once again urban, for the city.


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