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Bogotá historically has had a troubled relationship with the mountains and rivers that define its limits. The city’s western boundary is the polluted Bogotá river, which acts as a barrier to the region’s most fertile valley. On the opposite edge, the city grid terminates at the Eastern Mountains, where the terrain becomes too steep to build. Once hundreds of creeks flowed down from here into the valley; almost all of them have now been turned into underground canals.

Bogotá’s relation to these natural boundaries will be interrogated in a series of projects using generative algorithmic design and digital prototyping techniques. Going beyond nostalgic efforts to recreate an idealised image of the city, and avoiding heroic mega-scale projects that are incompatible with the way Bogotá grows, we will orchestrate piecemeal urban actions – simultaneous ventures into urban and micro scales that will provoke speculations on how to change the cityscape.

The workshop will be organised in two studios, each focusing on one scale: scripted systems of organisation at the urban scale will define locations for speculative, small spaces; and samples of these will be digitally prototyped at 1:2. Developed as a collective effort, the play between scales will allow participants to find specific urban performances, and will demonstrate the necessity of using complex systems of organisation to address today’s urban questions.

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