Competition: PARCO LIBERO A vision for the landscape of the Acqua dei Corsari headland

Competition: PARCO LIBERO A vision for the landscape of the Acqua dei Corsari headland

The theme of the International Competition of Ideas is the landscape design of Park ‘Libero Grassi’ in the neighborhood Acqua dei Corsari, in Palermo.

The Association ‘Parco Libero’, along with other entities and institutions, promotes an International Call for Ideas that bears a high ethical and symbolic value, for the person after whom the Park is named and for the opportunity it could represent for the territory.

From the rubble, neglect, and decay a park will rise, full of nature, art, culture, and recreational opportunities. A park by the sea, the long denied and now desired sea, with a breathtaking view on the Gulf of Palermo, from Monte Pellegrino to Capo Zafferano.

1 – Panoramic view with Monte Pellegrino in the background

The south coast of Palermo, with its maritime villages, very popular until the 50s among both bathers, thanks to its numerous bathing beaches and healthy water, and fishermen, thanks to its small harbors, was altered and wrecked due to the building boom of the following years, sadly known as the ‘sack of Palermo’.


The building speculation in the northern area of the city, fueled by the interests of the mafia, led to the dumping on the coast of thousands of cubic meters of earth and building material from the demolitions. That dumping changed the shape of several stretches of coast, polluting the water and provoking the sand fill of some of the landfalls. One of these dumpings, technically named ‘mamelon’, is that of Acqua dei Corsari, where the Park, named after Libero Grassi in 2013, stands.

Libero Grassi was an entrepreneur. He was killed by the mafia on August 29, 1991 after having publicly opposed the extortion racket.

The Park has never been open to public fruition. This area, that amounts to 11 hectares, will soon be subject to environmental remediation. Our goal is to provide the area of a design for a multi functional urban park, that may serve as an example of urban regeneration for the neighborhood and the whole city.

Aerial photo of the park

The initiative seeks to identify and define the potentialities of the site, that will be at the base of the expected proposals for the park, for an effective and lasting transformation.

The Competition aims to encourage the circulation of ideas, involving students and new graduates.

The outcomes of the Competition will constitute possible scenarios upon which the debate among the disciplines that deal with urban transformation, the administration and the citizens will be built.

The same outcomes could involve public and private stakeholders and start a network of investors drawn to a good idea.

The object of the Competition is the drafting of a landscape project, that emphasizes the extraordinary landscape values of the site, while keeping sustainability and inclusion as goals, and that may give vitality to the neighborhood, taking as a starting point the indications present in the document “Design guidelines document” on

The official languages of the Competition are Italian and English, to encourage a wide participation from abroad and to valorize an approach open to different design cultures. The Proposals are asked to produce scenarios open to innovation, possibly appreciable in a multiscale perspective, that will allow, in the future management of the Park, the participation of different entities in the fields of art, social sport, recreation, and education.


The Competition is intended for new graduates (graduation session held from 2018 onwards) and undergraduates in Landscape Architecture and Architecture.

However, new graduates and undergraduates in disciplines other than these (e.g., urban planning, agricultural sciences, forestry sciences, environmental sciences, fine arts, design, engineering, humanities, economics, law) may be group members.

The formation of multidisciplinary groups where both humanistic disciplines and a technical-scientific skill set might converge is encouraged.

No participant will be allowed to be a part of more than one group.

Competition calendar

Registration – by 24:00 on July 16, 2021 new deadline September 15, 2021

FAQ – by 24:00 on July 16, 2021 new deadline September 05, 2021

Answer to the FAQ – by 24:00 on July 30, 2021 new deadline September 10, 2021

Delivery of documents – by 12:00 on October 15, 2021

Communication of the results of the competition on the website – November 10, 2021

Award ceremony and inauguration of the exhibition – November 20, 2021
The Jury consists of 10 effective members with voting rights.


  • First prize € 3.000,00 (three thousand/00);
  • Second prize € 1.500,00 (one thousand and five hundred/00);
  • Third prize € 750,00 (seven hundred and fifty/00).
  • Certificate of merit for the selected proposals (up to 10th place)
  • Participation certificates for all competitors in compliance with the regulations of the competition notice, which can be used for the
  • Publication of the projects in “open access” on the website
  • Events for the presentation, awards and discussion of the results

Organizing body

Via Lombardia 20 – 90144 – Palermo

in partnership with IASLA – Società Scientifica Italiana

di Architettura del Paesaggio – Associazione Parco Libero OdV

Promoters and Supporters

– Comune di Palermo (with whom the Association has signed a memorandum of agreement)
– IASLA – Italian Academic Society of Landscape Architecture
– SITdA, Società Italiana di Tecnologia dell’Architettura
– Università degli Studi di Palermo
– Confcommercio Imprese per l’Italia
– Confcommercio Imprese per l’Italia – Palermo
- AIAPP – Associazione Italiana di Architettura del Paesaggio

For more information please visit Parco Libero Competition website

IFLA Europe
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IFLA Europe

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1070 Brussel, Belgium GSM: +32  492 319 451 Skype ID: ifla.europe Contact

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