Vacant schools transformed into nature education centres. Synagogues that reopened their doors to host community cultural events. Restored manors, abuzz with visitors and events. Abandoned households coming back to life as community spaces, workshops, or artistic residencies. Deserted railway lines converted into tourist trails. Industrial sites that now house classical music festivals and concerts. And so many more!
Our country is full of derelict spaces – this much we know, they’re all out there. Almost all settlements in Romania have visible traces left by significant demographic decline (mostly in rural and small-urban areas), industrial restructuring, property transfer in the post-communism years, or changes in the residents’ lifestyle.
However, this dereliction has a strong counterforce; our country is full of teams and organisations who have seen the value and the potential of abandoned sites and are now envisioning and creating new functions for them – it’s what we call “breathing new life” into a place. Revitalisation endeavours encompass much more than the practical activities of restoration or preservation, surpassing even aesthetic outcomes; within these processes, communities are born or reborn, giving way to creative, civic, and entrepreneurial synergies. Space is merely the beginning; the intervention upon it almost always becomes a way to generate conversation and create purpose in the community.
For those of you who are active and passionate about transforming and repurposing abandoned spaces, we are creating LATENT/EMERGENT, an action-based learning community for space revitalisation. We want to get to know each other, share creativity, learnings and resources and ultimately build this community together.
If you want to be part of LATENT/EMERGENT, please fill out this form (LINK).
You can find more information in the following presentation (RO only): LATENT/EMERGENT
If you need more information in English, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
LATENT/EMERGENT is part of the MKBT’s larger program “Capitalising on derelict spaces for local ecotourism development”, supported by the Romanian American Foundation. More infos on MKBT’s website: Capitalising on derelict spaces for local ecotourism development.