Balvanera Sur

Buenos Aires, Argentina

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Winning team: Balvanera 2030
Team members: Facundo Mendoza, Sol Miller, Eugenia Isabel O'Donnell, Josè Luis Ayala - Universidad National de San MartÌn
Clara Otermin Browne, Federico Savio, Trinidad Paternostro, Matías Lichtensztejn - Universidad de Buenos Aires

The team chose to analyse the “ensanche constitution” project in Buenos Aires. This project is based on sustainable development and the amplification of green areas for the community. It includes improving neighbourhood lighting, urban mobility and indigenous vegetation. The team proposes 6 innovative solutions with the objective to accurately determine and improve the environmental, energy and public infrastructure of the neighbourhood. The team undertook an environmental evaluation of the project and full financial analysis inclusive accounting for all works that relate to pedestrian travel, plaza construction as well as schools and energy solutions. The team proposes initiating a parking ban in all bus and taxi lanes in order to promote green transportation.

The project aims to incorporate over 2300 m2 of green areas, incentivise commercial development as well as improving security. A strategic plaza will be built close to the basilica of Santa Rosa which aims to improve accessibility to the neighbourhood as well as air quality. Two schools are planned for the social and educational development of the neighbourhood and a total of 65 kW of sustainably sourced energy was accounted for. 

Key components

  • Six distinct proposals that together improve the quality of the neighbourhood's public space, infrastructure, energy and environment.

  • Over 2300 m2 of green areas and 65 kW of sustainably sourced energy.

  • Construction of two new schools for the neighbourhood.

  • Promotion of sustainable lifestyle practices through public transportation, clean energy and green spaces. 

Learn more about the project in the project presentation.

Special Mention(s)

Team: Durazno Violeta

Team members: 

Rocío Marisol Gonzalez, Nicolás Franco Rossi, Mariano Alejandro García, Brenda María Luján Sori, Florencia Sawon, Agustina Farias - University of Buenos Aires
Bianca Agostina Mera Rocchi - Universidad Nacional de Tres de Febrero

Team: Barrio Gruen

Team members: 

Claudia Margarita Rendón Velázquez, Samuel Michael Blake, Areeba Saeed, Angelina Atanova, Jiwon Kim, Marina Kaperoni - Technical University of Munich

Advisor: Dr. Daphne Keilmann-Gondhalekar

TEDxCountdown talk of the winning team

Presentation of the site

Balvanera Sur, is located approximately 1.5 kilometres west of the centre of the city of Buenos Aires. It is in the south of Balvanera neighbourhood. The site is a large 36 block area, with a population of around 18,905. It is made up of mainly middle, lower-middle and low-class households.

Balvanera Sur, is well connected, in terms of public transport, with a dozen bus lines and one metro station (line H). Daily needs, such as grocery stores and pharmacies, are well-served within the neighbourhood. However, Balvanera is one of the neighbourhoods with the lowest meters of green space per inhabitant in the city. It is an area with few options for neighbours to meet and do outdoor activities. There is only one green space, Velasco Ibarra Square (Plaza Velasco Ibarra). The lack of green space, along with high rates of crime (mainly muggings), homelessness, and poor urban hygiene means the area has become degraded.

There is now an opportunity to regenerate the area to create new spaces where people can meet, and which promotes healthy habits and economic development within the area.

Approx. Site Area
53 hectares. 36 blocks form the area. Some of them are atypical.

Approximately,18,900 inhabitants in 8,400 houses, (the average household consists of 2.24 people) 46% men and 54% women with middle and low- incomes with a trend to low incomes.

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Jury Composition

Alejandro Yomal, Chief of Staff, Directorate-General of Urban Anthropology, Secretariat of Urban Development, Buenos Aires City Government. 
Cecilia Segal, Director-General of Urban Regeneration, Ministry of Public Space and Urban Hygiene, Buenos Aires City Government.
Silvia Collin, President of Junta Comunal N° 3, Comuna 3 (Balvanera and San Cristóbal).
Martina Ferrarino, Buenos Aires City Advisor, C40.
Alex Jimenez, Associate, Urban Planning and Design, Arup.
Guillermo Tella, Professor and Researcher, University of Buenos Aires.
Carlos Moreno, 
Associate Professor & Scientific Director “Entrepreneurship, Territory, Innovation”, Sorbonne University IAE.

If you have a question or would like more details on the site and the Students Reinventing Cities competition, please use the form below. You will receive a response via email.

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Buenos Aires