José Carlos Burle Square
Praça José Carlos Burle is an almost hidden forest between the streets and lanes of Vila Madalena, in São Paulo, Brazil. When entering its paths, fauna and flora reveal themselves as a breath of the city. Its uneven terrain is one of the challenges for the maximum use of its occupation potential. It also has only a few investments in infrastructure and that is an impossibility for those neighbors who pass by and would like to enjoy the square more.
The study seeks to identify opportunities for improvements in the square, encompassing a propositional diagnosis that brought the interest of local residents closer together, becoming a starting point for the development of a community engagement project in order to create interventions and activities in the square, involving a series of actors and collaborators and moving a network to make dreams and interests of the community possible in the square.
With a predominantly residential environment and with the presence of some services, the square borders a municipal school, in addition to being close to three other schools (about 200 meters from each one).
The square currently has a court with continually active uses, a children’s playground, a seating area with tables and benches and an outdoor fitness center. The existing equipment is widely used by the residents and for the activity of the neighboring school, but the potential of the square is certainly underutilized.
Throughout the study, meetings and workshops were held with residents and local actors, usually promoted by local working groups. This movement helped to collect dreams, existing opportunities and wishes from the community.
The identification of dreams allows organizing the spaces in the square into areas of “Activities” and “Living and Meetings”. Solutions are proposed to improve roads accessibility, integration of unevenness with decks and playful structures, expansion of the spaces for carrying out various activities in the square, improvements in furniture; renovation of existing equipment and creation of gardens to contain the land, gardens, and landscaping.