To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Constitution of Kuwait, Al Amiri Al Diwan, the government agency, decided to build a park in Kuwait City to host “The Constitution”, a monumental garden celebrating the path to democracy of the State of Kuwait.
In 2011, Al Amiri Al Diwan set up an invited competition for a site close to the sea; then in 2012 SDARCH Trivelli&Associati with Alhadeff Architects were commissioned to develop the design on another site called Martyrs’ Park, now Al Shaheed Park.
The Constitution garden is divided into two areas, “Old Age” and “New Age”. The monument marks the transition from the old era that represents the pre-Constitution period and the new era, the period after the establishment of the State of Kuwait.
“Old Age” is represented by a messy landscape, arid and furious, where instability and insecurity reign. “New Age” is represented by an organized landscape, prosperous and orderly, dominated by security and calm. The garden is designed, according to Islamic tradition as a reflection of paradise, a place where one can linger and where time passes; a shaded space where water and vegetation abound, all interpreted in a new contemporary vision; a place where time is “in-between”, between the history of the State of Kuwait and its future; where the space is also “in-between”, between the garden and the new landscape of Kuwait City.
The paths in “Old Age” are not ordered; the landscape is rough, tough; trees and shrubs coexist with small rocky formations and struggle with a desert land, in an arid climate without water.
The monument is intended as a stepping stone to the future and is made with two large portals. On the side of “Old Age” they are made of brass and titanium while on the side of “New Age”, 183 blocks en relief highlight the articles of the Constitution.
The façade of brass on the side of “Old Age” is without lyrics or guidance: the difficulties of the past are resolved and overcome by the Constitution.
The Fountain, at the center of the park has the image of protection of the precious treasure. A water sprinkler system gives greater thermal comfort allowing visitors to rest in the shade of the park during the warmest periods.
In “New Age” the garden is made up of 183 olive trees and palm trees representing the individual articles of the Constitution. Dozens of species of shrubs represent different ethnic groups making up the people of Kuwait.
The landscape design of this project tells a story, a story of a Country with all the people that live in. It is a place where to stay and to find out a world a sense, the culture in a contemporary interpretation of a urban public garden in a strong arid climate. A place full of history but designed for the people.
There are symbolic trees, palms and olive trees, the first resistant to the climate the latter for their evocative power and the great resistance and adaptability to the context. Usually, the architects choose the local plants according to the hardiness zones, but in this case, with a radiation and a temperature so strong it would not be enough.
There is a great shady area, where people could sit, walk and stop, usually in these climatic area you do not do it because of the heat and the direct sun radiation. To improve the comfort feeling, with conditions of existing low humidity and high temperature, it was used the sea water, filtered with a reverse osmosis system, a high technology water treatment which produces clear water for a series of jets of vaporized water spread among the shrubs and feeds a large mirror fountain, as reflection and connection with the sky. Water is precious. Normally the land is not a minor issue, and here it was not. It was used large amounts of fertilizer for the soil and the fertilizer slow-release place in depth, so that in time does not vanish the effect of improvement, but mainly was covered large areas with shrubs, herbs and grasses, in order to reduce the effect of direct sun radiation which it acts as pauperization of the soil. The great diversity of species of shrubs used in the project symbolically evokes the many ethnic groups that, today, inhabit the Kuwait.
First Ring Rd
Kuwait City, Kuwait
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