Location: Qeparo, Himara, Albania
Program: Promenade, design of public spaces, urban accesses, parking, bike paths, recreation facilities, etc;
Intervention Area: 18.500sqm
Contracting authority: Albania Development Fund & Regional Development Fund
Contracting status: DEA Studio winner of the open competition
Position: Project Leader, Urban Planner, Landscape Designer, Architect, Supervisor
Activities performed: Urban planning, landscape design, preliminary design, final design, detail design, material, tender documents and supervision
Actual status: Completed
Qeparo waterfront answers the Government objectives, regarding the improvement on the coast facilities and entertainments. The promenade proposal respects the traditional attitude/habit of Mediterranean countries and especially the Albanian one for the evening walks. Its total length of quite 1.6 km is shared in between the 0.6 km, which belongs to the hilly coast part of Qeparo village and 1 km of a flat and olive planted terrain. The intervention, beyond the design of the Waterfront itself, represents the definition of a functional diagram, that locates 2 different accesses in its perimeter. The main access is that of the familiar tourism in direct contact with the coastal Qeparo residences. The alternative proposed one in the North part that is dedicated especially for daily visitors of the amazing beaches, avoiding at the same time the overloading of the waterfront South part.
The design approach is well distinguished between the 0.6 km of the waterfront perimeter in conformity with the existing stony heritage details of the Qeparo village (houses & paths) and the 1 km one, more “liberated” and with different touches of modernity. The design diagram defines five recreational prominent stopes/squares in the long perimeter of the waterfront as clear references for its attendees. The ending of the promenade in the North side of the waterfront is foreseen to be a yacht pier, meanwhile, in South side there will not be a final destination, but in contrary, an adventure path crossing the rocky morphology toward Borsh, the neighbor village in South.
The construction of the waterfront tripled the number of the visitors in the first tourist season after its work complement. It has all the trend and potential to grow onward with the extension of the touristic hospitality capacities.