An innovative technological approach aiming to strengthen unity by enhancing a boundary: the island's geographic shape!
Think about Cyprus...an island in the Mediterranean sea. Think about the current division and then the unifying coastline....650km of coastline!!! This is what defines its geographical shape, this is the only border which does not divide, it represents unity instead....What if we could empower this element....? mmhh...yes! what about a continuous waterfront...? How about creating a continuous route which runs along the whole island's coastline? A route of different widths shapes, different attractions in different contexts and coast types... to be used both physically and virtually for trekking, for cycling, for sightseeing? An innovative mobility and knowledge tool which will offer an alternative reading of the landscape and will enhance urban, environmental and
cultural awareness. But most of all, it will promote a different type of island-wide circulation enhancing the Cyprus's conception as one! So 1.2.3 go round and see! invites you to cross the 123 coastal communities and municipalities and admire the island's shared beauties along a thrilling route.
The idea materialises basically on two levels:
Level 1. An online interactive map, a documenting/informative, participative and knowledge tool
Level 2. Proposals for the actual physical structuring of the route.
The online technological tool (1) will be documenting the whole procedure consisting in the final product through which the physical space is virtually reflected. At the
same time it will also host, disseminate and support Level 2 throughout its development process. The idea aims to be built with the engagement of local civil society. This
participative procedure will be implemented with a series of meetings/workshops along the route with the local communities (grouped in approx. 10 locations).
The idea aims moreover to have a strong impact through the promotion of alternative tourism or ecotourism models on local, European and international levels. The
route could be further promoted for other types of organised events and activities on regional and European level, eg. the European Cyclists Federation. Why not
imagine along with the Rally of Cyprus, the Cycling Around Cyprus annual event. Eventually Famagusta could be the starting point for a continuous coastal trip since the
other crossing point, Limnitis, remains on a coastal route. Another idea is the Triathlon which is already taking place in some coastal locations. Cycling groups on the
island as well as environmental organisations (Bikin' Cyprus Events, Cyprus Cycle Show, AKTI) have already been contacted or informed.
So, get prepared... bikes or trainers, cameras or binoculars or whatever you need to 1.2.3 go round and see!
Direct actions of infrastructuring physically the route are not envisioned at the current stage. However, the initiated bottom up planning process will open the door to
transversal planning alternatively from the existing procedures. The idea in fact, stems from the identification of a series of problems which Cyprus faces either these
derive from planning issues, the ongoing conflict or the island's mentality. More precisely, the problems which the current idea aims to respond to are:
1. Lack of the idea of shared ownership and responsibility in regards to the island's resources and heritage from both communities; general lack of a common future.
2. Reduced role of the local authorities in Cyprus and low local participation in decision making process
3. Diffused idea of unlimited construction and lack of environmental consciousness