In the district of Nadezhda in Sofia, the foundations for a remarkable wooden construction, a Food Production and Leisure Pavilion, have been laid. Over the past five years, as part of the URBiNAT project, local planners, researchers, and citizens have come together to co-select this emblematic URBiNAT Technological Nature-Based Solution (NBS).
Since 2018, URBiNAT has been dedicated to reshaping urban environments through Nature-Based Solutions (NBS) and the co-creation of Healthy Corridors in 3 Frontrunner Cities, including Sofia, and 4 Follower Cities. Innovative NBS, as featured in the URBiNAT NBS Catalogue, aim to address urban challenges while enhancing the well-being of residents and promoting sustainable living.
Co-Selection of a Technological NBS
The journey to the construction phase of the Food production and leisure pavilion in Sofia’s Nadezhda district began with a unique approach to NBS selection. Local planners, researchers, and citizens were actively engaged in a collaborative co-selection process that took into account the district’s specific needs and aspirations. This participatory approach not only ensured that the NBS aligned with the community’s desires but also fostered a sense of ownership and pride among residents.
The Pavilion, the first elements of which are starting to emerge out of the ground, is the result of collective decision-making and the attention that has been given of tailoring solutions to suit local contexts. It reflects the district’s and – more importantly – the local community’s commitment to creating a healthier, more vibrant and inspiring urban environment that combines technology with nature.
A Hub for Food Production and Leisure
The Food Production and Leisure Pavilion, now under construction, is set to become a hub of activity and innovation in Nadezhda. It will serve several purposes:
- Food Production: The pavilion will host urban agriculture initiatives, allowing residents to participate in growing fresh, organic produce, not only promoting sustainable food practices but also strengthening the community’s connection to nature and its food sources.
- Leisure and Recreation: The pavilion will also offer leisure and recreational opportunities for residents. It will be a place for relaxation, socialization, and the enjoyment of green spaces within the urban landscape.
- Technological Integration: True to the spirit of URBiNAT, the pavilion will integrate technology with nature. Smart solutions for irrigation, energy management, and data collection will be incorporated, creating an efficient and sustainable urban space.
A Model for Sustainable Urban Living
In the coming months, as the pavilion nears completion, it will stand as a symbol of innovation, sustainability, and resilience—an embodiment of Sofia’s dedication to creating a healthier and more prosperous future for all its residents. The URBiNAT journey continues, as the district of Nadezhda paves the way for a brighter, greener, and more connected urban landscape.