Gjirokastra rebirth through distributed retirement houses LUCA LEZZERINI

Gjirokastra rebirth through distributed retirement houses LUCA LEZZERINI

150 150 Sadmira Malaj

Gjirokastra rebirth through distributed retirement houses LUCA LEZZERINI

ISBN: 978-9928-4459-8-8
DOI: 10.37199/o41007125
ISSN: 2959-4081

Author: Luca Lezzerini
Affiliation: Ferrara University

Gjirokastra is facing a shrinking process that is hitting both population and economy, collapsing both and increasing the average age of inhabitants. Despite it being a UNESCO site and a well- known touristic target, the crisis seems to be irreversible. It is necessary to revert this process to avoid the final collapse of a city which has a lot of resources and a long-lasting history.
The paper investigates how to support the renaissance of Gjirokastra economy and society, fueling both through the redesign of its urban plan to support its transformation into a “City of Health”, which means widening the main economy pillar from tourism to health services. The idea is to create a local market for medical and sanitary services that will cause the creation of new industries and companies, attract new younger and professionally prepared people, bring equity and start a virtuous loop that will fuel itself for a long time. The local sanitary and medical market will be initially powered by attracting older people, following the example of other countries, especially basing on the Portugal experience. To move towards the “City of Health” target, the paper proposes to integrate currently isolated areas of the city; create a synergy between surrounding lands, the city and the industrial zone; develop a medical excellence area and attract people from abroad. The research question is: how to modify the urban plan of the city in order to attract elder people from abroad for their retirement and to create the opportunity of a local medical and sanitary industry development? The methodology used in this research has been based on an on-site survey, a literature review to analyse similar experiences, a SWOT analysis of the opportunities offered by current urban tissue and plan. Sketches and maps have then been developed to focus the strategy. Technology solutions have been also considered to solve issues emerged in the analysis. Final conclusions evidence that Gjirokastra has good opportunities and a main strategic plan that can be followed to trigger the rebirth of the city, but some important urban plan changes have to be made.

Publisher: Polis_press

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