03 location

Lake Karla, Greece

Former lake Karla, located at the southeast edge of the Thessaly plain, was unluckily drained in 1962 in order to provide new farming land and remove the expansive surrounding swamp. This land reclamation undertaking proved largely problematic. In fact, the old lake bed resulted in an extended stretch of poor quality land, unsuitable for cultivation and susceptible to floods. In addiction the region’s entire micro-climate was negatively affected, the underground water was severely decreased, wildlife vanished and a vigorous fishermen community in the surrounding villages was terminated.
In front of such failures, an ambitious project to restore lake Karla was set up in the 90’s. A complex enterprise of building artificial embankments, pump-stations, irrigation canals and an extensive water management infrastructure only recently completed. The new reservoir covering an 38,5 km2 area is slowly replenished, re-establishing so the image and the aquatic life of the old lake.
Our involvement with the lake Karla’s changing condition will be launched with a field survey that will allow us to fully comprehend and evaluate the landscape components and qualities. Progressively, we’ll focus on a certain lakeside area and will proceed to a loose planning, including planting proposals, along with more specific small scale interventions. Our aim is to revitalize the dull and barren ground of the new lake shores and fabricate an attractive setting where rural and recreational uses will emerge.


The lake is transformed through a gradient, an extension of earth that vanishes gradually in the water distributing the density of users and activities following the reflection of the context into the lake.
The project contains the main program near the shore, isolating the users while they go deeply into the wild, mixing the artificial elements with the natural, taking the shapes of the water waves introducing the users to the movement of the lake.
The program decreases its density such as its intensity since it is submerged in the water, it begins gathering people in a bar, a theater and public beaches, and ends with the solitude of personal islands passing through communal and personal fishing, working, reading and swimming spots.
The soil that merges from the lake is extracted
from a grid taken by the combination of different grids constructed since the reflection of the different elements of the context, such as the mountain, the fields, the village, and even temporal elements as the memory of the lake when it was dried.

Paolo Callegari - University of Trento
Chrisanthe Constantinou - University of Cyprus
Maria Giovanna Drago - Mediterranean University of Reggio Calabria
Edgar Omar Gonzalez Pedro - Universidad Iberoamericana Ciudad de México
Eleni Han - University of Thessaly
Lamprini Totsika - University of Thessaly
Mauro Ariel Williner - Universidad Nacional de Cordoba

Matteo Aimini - Politecnico di Milano
Ozan Avcı - ITU Faculty of Architecture, Istanbul
Javier Boned Purkiss - UMA Universidad de Malaga
Robert De Paauw - UPC Universitat Politécnica de Catalunya
Aspasia Kouzoupi - University of Thessaly
Kostas Manolidis - University of Thessaly
Spiros Papadopoulos - University of Thessaly

The exhibition at the museum
The workgroup
The workgroup and the professors