Built in 1971, the 3.5 kilometre-long elevated highway is a major thoroughfare providing access to cars into the city centre. Due to the nature of the construction – in many places the highway passes as close as 5m from residential dwellings – the highway has long been a source of contention between residents and government. In a bid to appease residents the highway is closed to vehicles between 9.30pm and 6.30am. Despite this, advocates for tearing down the highway have long been vocal, claiming its destruction would promote urban renewal.
Architecture studio Triptyque has released a plan that will turn this urban eyesore into a more engaging space. Triptyque’s proposal, Minhocão Marquise, offers suggestions regarding how the space under the viaduct can be used more productively to connect the community and create more pedestrian friendly spaces. The proposal also invites citizens to engage in the process of developing the area.
In collaboration with landscaper Guil Blanche, Triptyque’s proposal is based on architectural interventions that will provide more natural light and increase the vegetation – suspending it from the viaduct. This process will see 20% of c02 emissions from passing cars filtered. Given that the viaduct is one of the most polluted places in São Paulo, this aspect is one of the most important points of the development. A natural water harvesting system will be provided through the irrigation of the planned greenery, with vaporisation helping to clean the air in the surrounding area.
A range of community accessible programs is also planned, to be installed between the spaces of the concrete pillars under the viaduct. The programs include spaces for engaging with culture, food, services and shops.
International brand consultant company Interbrand has been commission by Triptyque to assist them in developing a unique character for Marquise Minhocão that will grant a new identity to the area. Daniela Bianchi-Giavina, Managing Director of Interbrand, states that the status quo must be challenged in order to remain relevant in today’s climate and that the Marquise Minhocão project “will provide a generous point of view to the city and its environment. It will bring a completely different perspective to São Paulo for all brands whom are betting on the city.”