In Istanbul, a city with few existing green spaces, studio DROR is proposing something radical – a park filled with innovative interventions as a way to encourage collective experience and gathering. Envisioned as “a love story between people and nature,” the Parkorman forest park will give people a chance to swing through the forest, play in giant ball pits, relax by reflecting pools, and even bounce several stories above the ground on canopy-level trampolines.
Located six miles north of the city center, DROR was faced with the challenge of providing an active incentive to draw residents out to the park. The solution was to preserve the existing forest life, and supplement it with delightful and surprising structures that allow people to play.
“We set out to create a park that dissolves the anxiety and fear that often accompanies an unfamiliar environment through a network of conditions that fosters unconditional love,” explain the architects. “We imagined the most profound experience delivered through the lightest touch; an effort that preserves the lush forest and leaves every tree in place, as mandated by the city.”
The masterplan is broken into five main zones, each designed to provoke their own emotion. Interaction and play are fostered in each zone through the series of interventions: At the park entrance, “The Plaza” introduces visitors to nature and provides open space for gathering and socializing; in “The Loop,” swings and hammocks float above the forest floor as a relaxing retreat from urban life; giant ball pits, inspired by the vibrancy of a Turkish spice market, make up “The Pool”; at “The Chords,” adventurous guests have the chance ascend into the treetops on a twisting footpath, and bounce on giant trampolines located within.
For a more reflective experience, “The Grove” offers a maze-like sculpture trail leading through the landscape. “The Fountain of Clarity,” a cube-shaped frame from which water showers down on all four sides, uses a sensor module and hydraulic piston to open upon approach, allowing the structure to envelop visitors in a watery room.
Non-linear pathways weaving between the trees connect the inventions together, and allow guests to choose their own route through the park.
LocationIstanbul, İstanbul, Turkey