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PARALLEL SPRAWL is an exploration of the state of suburban landscapes in Kosovo and Switzerland. Its aim is to provide a platform for exchange between practitioners and researchers from both countries to build a common basis for joint reflection on the future of these areas.

For decades, sprawl, or low-density urban development, has been the main form of urban growth in both countries. Very similar, these developments have occurred in very different socio-economic, political, and legal contexts.

Soon a group of architects emerged. In the beginning the group consisted of Rozafa Basha, Ibai Rigby, Guillaume de Morsier and Valentin Kunik. Thanks to several trips to Switzerland and Kosovo, but later elsewhere in Europe and the United States, thanks to the Future Architecture Platform in particular, our experience of “third urbanism” (everything that is neither the countryside nor the city) makes us want to understand it. Beyond the geopolitical reasons, we are fascinated by the spatial outcome of an urbanisation model which today no longer convinces. From a distance, however, it is the almost perfect mixture of the dream of the city and the dream of the countryside. Unfortunately, too few architects have dared to approach it, to try to understand these places, to reveal their beauty, to act benevolently in them. 

The fruit of our investigations was presented in Switzerland at the SAM and Architektur forum Ost Schweiz, in Kosovo at the Modelarium and in Graz at the House of Architecture.

Parallel Sprawl

Initiative

Suisse / Kosovo

2011