Municipality approves pedestrianization. New phase of the co-creation process begins

Friday 14 January 2022

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With the approval of the pedestrianization by the Municipality of Palermo we are ready to move on to a new phase of the participatory urban regeneration process of the stretch of Via Principe di Paternò in front of Liceo Finocchiaro Aprile: the co-construction of the new student square!

One step at a time we are transforming a piece of the city of Palermo together with the students of Liceo Finocchiaro Aprile. The stretch of Via Principe di Paternò in front of the school building will be pedestrianized and set up to become a square, a place created by and for the students of the school.

During the last year, as part of the CRETHINK project – Co-creative rethinking for sustainable cities, CESIE carried out a participatory planning process with a class of the school. In collaboration with a group of young professionals and other local associations such as Tu Sei La Città and PUSH, we have created together with the girls and boys a project for the area based on the needs of the people that inhabit it: the students in the first place, but also the inhabitants of the neighborhood.

In parallel, CESIE, the Municipality of Palermo and the school worked on signing a memorandum of understanding useful to define the responsibilities and governance mode of the new pedestrian area, in order to guarantee its sustainability over time.

«We have chosen to adhere to this memorandum- says the mayor Leoluca Orlando – because we believe in bottom-up participation and in the possibility that urban regeneration projects can be favored by paths of participation and sharing. Furthermore, we believe it is useful to act on the invitation that comes from the new generations that more and more believe in a city that values the quality of the air, the reuse of materials and sustainable mobility ».

The approval of the pedestrianization, therefore, opens a new phase of the process, that of the creation of the space. In this phase as well the students will be at the centre. The square will indeed be built through self-construction workshops with a representation of the student body. The interventions designed are creative, low-cost, sustainable and easy-to-implement solutions based on the principles and tools of Tactical Urbanism, a useful approach to bottom-up transformation processes of urban spaces like ours.

A Crowdfunding campaign was launched on the GoFundMe platform for the purchase of materials useful for the construction of the square.

Subtracting a space from traffic to transform it into a place of socialization built directly by those who inhabit it is an action that is potentially transformative of the ways we live in the urban space, as it looks at the city as commons, as a collective work that belongs to its inhabitants (Lefebvre, 1976).

About the project

CRETHINK – Co-creative RETHINKing for sustainable cities is co-funded by Erasmus+: Key Action 2, Strategic Partnership in the field of Adult education.


The partnerhip of the project is composed by:

For further information

If you want to know more about the local initiative and how you can contribute to a more sustainable future in the city, you can visit the project’s website, join the Facebook page or contact Alice Valenza !