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Varosha: ecocity or concrete city?

30 October, 2013

Reopening the ghost town of Varosha, whenever that occurs, presents a unique opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past and rebuild for a better future.
Yet it comes with significant risks.
Without careful planning, it could become just another unsustainable holiday complex in an already crowded Mediterranean tourism market, while cementing Famagusta as the second divided city in Cyprus, says a new initiative that is campaigning for a sustainable solution.
This will reduce the island’s attractiveness to quality tourism and harm its potential for investment, the group said.
The Famagusta Ecocity project aims to seize the opportunity to eradicate this modern European anachronism, by rebuilding Varosha in the context of a model ecopolis.
The idea is that all stakeholders—property owners and inhabitants—will be involved in reviving the city so that Famagusta can be rebuilt in a way that promotes peaceful coexistence amongst all inhabitants, embraces the latest eco-city technologies and thereby becomes a magnet for high-quality trade, commerce, tourism and investment.

Help make this happen
As a first step in this vision, the project’s goal is to prepare a comprehensive plan for the Varosha ecopolis before it is reopened.
To match international expertise with local knowledge, the team aims to bring world renowned ecocity specialist, Professor Jan Wampler, to Cyprus in January to lead an architectural design studio.
This will be the first step in designing an integrated model Famagusta Ecocity.
But it cannot happen without some funds.
An online Kickstarter campaign is currently under way to raise money for the documentary.
Unless the targeted 30,000 is reached, no money can be taken and the dream of preventing Famagusta from becoming a concrete city takes a big knock.
An additional hurdle for the team is that the rules of the Kickstarter campaign are such that money raised from this source can only go on creative projects such as filmmaking.
To raise money to bring Professor Wampler, the team is focusing on private donations.
For information on how to contribute to the studio, contact the team members. Or if you would like to help fund the film, there are still 13 days to go.
Take a moment to check out the 6-minute Kickstarter video.
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/320929240/the-famagusta-ecocity-project-a-documentary

The team
Vasia Markides [email protected]
Emily Markides [email protected]
Ceren Bogac [email protected]
George Lordos [email protected]
Beran Djemal [email protected]
Michael Loizides [email protected]
Armando Garma Fernandez [email protected]
Fiona Mullen [email protected]
Bernard Amadei (Engineers Without Borders)
Jan Wampler (MIT)