Adolf Horn Avenue, Tlajomulco de Zuñiga, Jalisco, Mexico
Guadalajara-based architectural practice, Agraz Architects, have completed the Adolf Horn Avenue project. Completed in 2011, the architectural project can be found in Tlajomulco de Zuñiga, Jalisco, Mexico.
As in many other parts of the Guadalajara Metropolitan Area, Adolf Horn Avenue is the result of the bounden need to communicate the diverse departments within Tlajomulco de Zuñiga city. When the lane was built, in times where the automobile was priority, it brought enormous benefits for thousands and thousands of people. Nevertheless, the great central space of the avenue was ignored from any urban or architectural project, becoming a large wasteland over time.
Therefore the need of an urban remodeling to optimise the road communication came with a bold highlight in the reassessment of the median strip. The initial government assignment asked for a lineal park however the proposal offers to include more green areas within the public ones.
The first obstacle found was budgetary because the work showed the need to build a main sewer which would solve a further problem: the rain season floods. This is how the amount spent on the underground project determined the strip solution which by putting on first hand importance the need of non-motorized mobility and focusing on alternative transportation came up with a three kilometer bicycle lane. Next is a high performance use of public space by a long garden for the dense population of the area.
This is how the Adolf Horn Avenue project develops out of three main concepts: park areas at the crossings of pedestrian zones with small plazas for people to use while they grab lunch at noon or for social gatherings; the bicycle lanes for work transportation of family promenades; and the significant tree sowing of a two thousand single species line forest.
At the end it is a long term project that largely depends on the maintenance it is given, mostly on its first years, and that if being successful it might mean a real difference between the importance given to the cars on the past years and the one given now to public space and green areas.
The new central strip of Adolf Horn Avenue can become a seed to be copied in other city avenues and a manifest of how much we need more roads with these features of public space and nature.
Of high relevance is the importance of the number of ash trees planted on the three kilometer strip of this eastern part of the Metropolitan area, as well as the shared commitment of Tlaquepaque to continue the work on the section of its property within Tlajomulco.
Images courtesy of Martin Opladen and words by Ana Guerrero Santos
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