Founded in 2001 by Franco-Romanian architects Constantin Petcouand and Doina Petrescu, AAA stages creative urban interventions that involve neighborhood residents in re-imagining unused, derelict spaces; for example, establishing a community hub in a pass-through between buildings or planting a self-sufficient vegetable garden in a space between high rises that was formerly treated as a place to throw refuse. AAA acts as the creative instigator; empowering communities to carry out and sustain their own urban regeneration ideas.
In a project titled Rhyzom the team started with a survey of models of sustainable community living around Europe. After mapping examples of co-housing, small-scale agriculture, and cottage industry, they translated their observations into workshops in green roof design, rainwater collection systems, waste recycling, food growing, and handicrafts.
Taking their findings further, AAA’s R-Urban project is a bottom-up strategy that seeks to expand urban resilience by introducing a network of resident-run facilities that allow citizens to produce their own food, create building materials from their waste and build co-operative housing units.
To learn more about Atelier d’Architecture Autogérée please listen to Episode 74 of Social Design Insights featuring Doina Petrescu.