British Council Ukraine and the Goethe-Institut, in partnership with CANactions, launched a programme to identify, support and implement innovative urban development projects that seek to reinvigorate post-industrial, mid-sized cities across Ukraine through cultural and creative industries. The programme recognises the importance of supporting communities which are working together to address common urban issues.
TSPA, as German partner, supported one of the two winners during the implementation of their proposal in Konstyantinivka (Ukraine).
The city is situated in a peripheral region of Ukraine, close to the Russian border and the conflict zones. Economy and population were sensibly affected by the war and, as consequence, Konstyantinivka felt into poverty and abandonment.
A former soviet power plant crosses the settlement and defines its linear extension. Once abandoned it left an enormous void isolating the two sides of the city. This peculiar urban structure increased social segregation and discouraged inhabitants to react and take care of common goods.
The NGO MovEast together with a team of local activists proposed to revitalise a strategic collective space of the city and regenerate the lost social cohesion. Their aim was to re-activate a public square in front of the central abandoned theatre through a series of cultural activities.
TSPA led the team through some of the most known Berlin participatory practices and discussed possible scenarios of the intervention. Simultaneously, TSPA guided the team during the design process of simple structures able to hold temporary events and workshops such as video screening and cleaning, repairing, painting. The challenge was to involve community to take part of the events with scarce financial and material sources and to encourage local authorities to support the project.