PAIS(VI)AGEM · guidelines for Guaraqueçaba Bay

design, research

Tourism and landscape form part of an interactive binomial of dependence: there is no tourist development without a landscape; it also seems that landscapes, especially those called cultural landscapes, need tourism as an economic activity to be sustained (Goula, Spanou and Perez Rumpler, 2012 · download).

Pais(vi)agem aims to introduce the ecotourism concept in the norther area of Paranà State in Brazil – the Guaraqueçaba bay – working at two different scales, from the territory to the architectonic objects. Pais(vi)agem transfers the Lerner’s Urban Acupuncture theory to the landscape, through small-size interventions on natural landscapes that influences the whole territory.

The waterfront of Guaraqueçaba / pictures by Enrico Porfido, Claudia Sani and Elsa Montecchi

The project gives a structure to the existing touristic system, integrating and enhancing this spontaneous cluster. Guaraqueçaba becomes a natural-sportive-scientific hub around which natural hotspots gravitate. It provides the main touristic services – accommodation, restaurants, infrastructures, etc – since it is better linked with the region, while the hotspots are one-day destinations.

The cluster strategy avoids the worthless construction of infrastructures, promoting no-carbon emission transportation solutions (as kayak, bike, sailing boat), and it controls the touristic fluxes, protecting and valorising the natural heritage. Funds saved are re-invested in territorial promotion, protection, valorisation and formation in order to make citizens aware of their own territory value.

Tourism cluster connections in the Bay of Guaraqueçaba / designed by Claudia Sani and Enrico Porfido

Guaraqueçaba Square design is the main project intervention in order to transform the city in the network activator centre. The project is a simple addition to the existing waterfront of a wooden platform that re-draw the coastline both in terms of shape and functions. The pier becomes the fundamental link between land and sea. 

The new city asset / drawing by Claudia Sani and Enrico Porfido

The acupuncture interventions around the bay are entirely designed in wood and built according to traditional techniques for emphasizing the strong relation with the territory. They create a new landscape from the existing one. The four typologies differ in approach to the coastline, but are generated by the same module 2x2m.

The walk among mangroves allows to appreciate the coastline variation from close-by, driving the tourist to cross the threes branches. The bird-watching tower instead offers a panoramic view and permit to enjoy it from its top. The dolphins observation platform turns upside down the ordinary viewpoint, forcing the observant to watch the landscape from the water. The sambaquis barrier joins two functions, protecting the archeological heritage and disclosing it to the surrounding giving the possibility to stand close and contemplate it.

The micro-architectures designed with local materials / designed by Claudia Sani and Enrico Porfido

Pais(vi)agem deals with sustainability not only in terms of technological solutions and flexibility, but also social impact on communities. The local materials use and the idea of recovering the traditional techniques are functional to a formative process addressed to the bay citizens. Pais(vi)agem promotes a sustainable approach in the touristic process in order to emphasize its action on landscape and communities. The installation of the micro-architectures around the bay want to start an awareness process about territorial identity for proving that it is a “common heritage” that needs to be both preserved and enjoyed.



Porfido, E. & Sani, C. (2018) PAIS(VI)AGEM – Tourism as opportunity for valorisation and protection of natural and cultural landscapes in the Bay of Guaraqueçaba, Brazil. Paesaggio Urbano, Volume 3/2018 (60-67). Rimini: Maggioli Editore. · download

“PAIS(VI)AGEM Tourism, infrastructures and natural heritage: guidelines for Guaraqueçaba Bay regeneration, Paranà, Brazil” is the Master Thesis in Architecture by Claudia Sani and Enrico Porfido, tutored by Luca Emanueli, Alessandro Cambi – Ferrara University – and Marta Gabardo – PUCPR Pontifical Catholic University of Paraná, Curitiba. The thesis was defended in March 2015 at Ferrara University.

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