The project proposes redeveloping Pomona Island in Manchester, which is currently a brownfield site, into a green, urban oasis. Two main approaches are employed for the redevelopment: one ecological and one experiential.The ecological approach employs nature and environmental based techniques as instruments to create open green space, a woodland, wildlife habitat, a constructed wetland, an orchard and an urban fruit and vegetable garden, while sustaining clean air, water, and natural resources for a sustainable site development. The project involves an ecological process of environmental reclamation and renewal, recovering not only the health and biodiversity of ecosystems across the site, but also the spirit and imagination of children and adults who will use the new spaces and facilities.
The experience approach is characterised by a human-centred perspective, particularly focused on children and their interaction with the existing elements and spaces found on the island and the proposed interventions. The project is focusing in particular on providing meaningful outdoor experiences for school children, in order to develop their love for nature and their pro-environmental behaviour. Children are the future stewards of the planet and they can have deep influence in the protection of natural environments, therefore I propose a variety of spatial interventions for them: places to be active – boathouse, swimming pools, and playing mounds; spaces to be quiet and contemplative – forest and glade pavilion; places to immerse themselves and interact with nature – orchards camping and vegetable garden; to learn from and observe nature – retained wild vegetation and constructed wetland.