Bottom-up urban regeneration through cultural industries

In a neighbourhood ofLjubljananamed Tabor several organizations gathered to improve the quality of life in the area. They all work in the field of art and culture and together with local community they represent an important factor of urban regeneration of this part of the city.

Tabor is a neighbourhood with a central position in the city of Ljubljana. Although with high population density and many cultural, sport and other organizations, having their headquarters in the area, it still suffers from the lack of identity and social cohesion. Survey, conducted last year by Bunker, a non-profit organization that is working in the field of cultural activities, showed that its inhabitants perceive their surroundings as a place of transit rather than a place of meeting. Places to socialize, green spaces and sense of community are missing. Therefore several partners from the area have decided to join their forces to offer some activities and provide park equipment, which will help to revitalize the park of Tabor that is located in the centre of the neighbourhood.

Tree lights and bird houses were installed in the park as well as some other urban and sports equipment. Also some tables and Wi-Fi were available for those who wished to work in the park instead of in the office. For people who wished to relax in the park, some hammock and canvas chairs have been on offer to borrow and also some playground equipment for the children. Instead of grass which fails to grow in the shadow and gives an impression of negligence, some plants were proposed that don’t need a lot of sun and look nice even in the colder time of the year. There is a discussion currently taking place between the City ofLjubljanaand the Sports club Tabor, regarding the renovation of the sport areas, adjacent to the park.

During the late spring and summer months various sports, cultural and social activities were organized every day, such as literature reading (including fairy tales for the children), slackline and table tennis tournaments, bowling and other cultural and social events. The park was maintained and drinks were also available. Program was designed in cooperation with local people, organizations and institutions.

Slackline was one of the regular activities in the Park Tabor during the summer of 2011.

Organizations, dealing with culture, education, sustainable and spatial development, that are located in the neighbourhood of Tabor, have set up the Cultural quarter of Tabor Society (Društvo Kulturna četrt Tabor- KČT). Its main purpose is to strengthen the cooperation between individuals and organizations in the field of culture and to encourage the local involvement in activities in the neighbourhood. The society will try to address the problems of sustainable development with expert support from Institute for Spatial Policies and Focus society. They also plan to occasionally publish a »Tabor« magazine with information and stories about neighbourhood and the KČT. Organizations that offer cultural contents to the public are planning more concerted action in the promotion and the supply of cultural contents. KČT also enjoys strong support from representatives of the City quarter Center, which will also participate at the various activities.

The article was first published in the 3rd Biannual Report of the Slovenian URBACT National Dissemination Point

Activities in Park Tabor in 2011

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