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EASA 2016

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Introduction About EASA and the workshop Circular economy Observing Nida Talks General challenges Circular EASA What do we create? What can we do? Circular Neringa Baltic Sea Region connection Future oppurtunities Sport and culture possibilities Bring the power to the idea Circular Architecture Case studies Golden Dunes, Nida Map of EASA final products Round Table of EASA final products Workshop results got published



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This book is a product of one of the workshops of EASA 2016; ’Bring Nida the Full Circle.’ It’s about the idea of a circular economy which is a concept of an industrial system that attempts to create a flow of resources, both organic and technological, that supposedly works in closed loops of reuse. The system is restorative and regenerative by design and promotes the multicycle flow of resources. (McArthur Foundation, 2014). In an ever growing population, we have to think of the way we use our recourses in order to survive long term. We wish you joy in reading our findings on the idea of a circular economy.



The European Architecture Students’ Assembly (EASA) is a network of architecture students from all over the continent founded in 1981. Every summer this event takes place in a different country whereby 500 design students, graduates and tutors live together in a selfsustaining, community-like setting. This year, the annual event is taking place at Nida, Lithuania. 500 architecture students from all over Europe arrived to the Golden Dunes in Nida as a part of this pan-european association’s annual summer school, this year with 36 different workshops counting cunstruction, design, theoretical etc.

EASA 2015, Malta. Pho


Participant team with tutors at Nida Art Colony. Photo Michail Železniak

We envision Bring Nida Full Circle to be a catalyst of a change, which creates the testbed for architectural innovations and discoveries, which can start the process of implementing problem-driven solutions in the urban environment and daily city life of Nida. The way to do it is to implement a new creative Circular Economy, but first we need to know how it works. Architects, researchers and urban planners should help local authorities, business and communities inproviding the know-how for emerging spatial architectural projects with a concrete focus on how these projects reflect and help to grow the local economy. Tutors Viacheslav Ivanov, Donatas Baltrusaitis Guest tutor / lecturer Elena Aarchipovaite

oto Alexandra Konochenko

Participants Nastya Tsurkovskaya, Margarida N. Waco, Elina Torma, Paulius Kliucininkas, Krista Skujina, Michail Železniak, Augustas Makrickas, Remi Groenendijk, Panu-Petteri Kujala , Andon Cenollari, Anna Klimczak




CIRCULAR ECONOMY A circular economy is ‘the economic system in which resources are kept at the highest possible level of functionality at all times’ and the material management within this economy is critical to its success.



As of the type of our research and project, we were having no doubts that the general public should be involved in the project and their thoughts used to form a general idea about the city and what should be improved or looked into it. Also by doing this we understand and discovered hidden parts of the city, which are usually not discovered by tourists. Our first meeting with our project group started with a fieldtrip with Anton, a local person working in the field of architecture, also involved in another EASA workshop as a tutor. We were

exploring Nida, understanding how the city works, what are the newest projects or constructions done in the city and how did it change during the time he lived here. We also understood that Nida is not always trustworthy, a lot of the so called historic houses are newly built and only have traditionally looking elevations, some of the pathways are being changed just for the cause of it being changed, while other ones are left unattained and with no lighting. It also visible with other touristic attractions like smoked fish sold in a lot of places, but actually the fish was not caught


here, but just bought at the port city KlaipÄ—da and sold here as if the local fishermen had caught it here. Later we went to meet the local people and the visitors of the city. We started our path from Neringa gymnasium, meeting teachers and helping staff, moving forward we made our way to Neringa art school and talking with the headmaster. Then arriving in the city center we talked with local tourists and foreign ones. Our last stop was the history museum of Neringa.

The general thoughts outspoken were that people are happy living in Neringa. „This is the richest county in the country, after all“ they said. Meeting foreign tourists here, they were really happy and satisfied with the untouched nature here, just having some annoyance with the car traffic inside the city center. The local tourists were saying it is an amazing place to visit, not hiding that it is really expensive to have their vocation here. On

the other hand they know that the city is really expensive, some of them mentioned going to buy household items in the port city. Also that the number of children in the gymnasium is decreasing every year. And all in all young adults have no activities here. A mentioned quote would be „as soon as my daughter is in here preteens, we‘re moving out from here for her to have better extracurricular options“.


The general idea we got was that no strict changes are needed, no organizing is needed and everything in general time will improve or stay as good as it is, the older people are really counting on the new generation on all of this. Of course the local people and the foreigners love the natural surrounding of the area, but when asked about future they just shook their shoulders by saying nobody really thought about it.


Nida is a resort for rich people. The resort is extremely expensive. For example, people are eating outside the town. Mainly uneducated people live here. It influences their critical view. It is hard for young people to live here. There is a lack of diverse housing. The teacher doesn’t immagine living in Nida in the future. The art school has relations with artists visiting Nida in winter time as well.



Younger generation will change everything in a better way. Older people have nothing to do. Neringa is one of the best places to live. People are just relaxed there. Although, there are no activities for young families, particularly in winter time. There are the most expensive municipal taxes in the country. The Vice-mayor is developing his own politics based on business. As a result, people are unsatisfied about this political situation. The amount of school children is decreasing. There will be no full time citizens. Actually, there will be no lithuanians left in the country.


He spends summers in a yacht in the harbour. The lagoon and Nida are popular among fishermen in winter time. He doesn’t believe that the dunes are going to be stropped. The water will stay for a longer time anyway. The lagoon water is clean enough. Social boundaries between full time living local and oficially registrated people are ordinarry and good.



They are satisfyed with the nature, history, culture. However, the infrastructure of vehicles is too intensive.


Overall she is very happy with life in Neringa and Nida, however it’s getting harder to make ends meet financially. She is also concerned about her pupils, since most-likely they are not going to stay to live in Nida.




- Nida is mostly dependent on tourism - Economy of Nida is seasonal - Nida is dependent on the Neringa and broader Curonian spit region - Population is getting older - In 70 years dunes will most likely disappear - EU support will end in 2020 - Visible gap between rich and poor - There is no obvious long-term strategy - To take all EASA can give to NIDA “Nida is good until you grow to 12!�



Easa exists out of more or less 500 architecture students from almost every country in Europe. There are more experienced architecture students or working young architects who apply to the workshops as “tutors”, they basically create the concept of the workshop and gather a team of participants to work on it for 2 weeks. Each workshop varies, some are specific this could vary from doing blueprints for a construction workshop before the event starts and basically doing the construction for it, having an idea and then collaborating with participants to create it together, workshops could also

be artistic where the end result can be an exposition, there are also theoretical workshops and of course uncategorized ones, which can vary in many ways. There are 2 weeks given to finish the projects and present them to the public. Within these two weeks we share knowledge, creativity and enthusiasm by collaborating together. Living, showering, eating, working and having drinks together the community gets really close. This could be called “mini europe” in a very basic sense. Also this group living and working together generates an impact on the context of its location.





EASA creates a lot! It could be divided into a community part and workshop part. The community creates awareness and education process. EASA also creates workshops of which results are made. Although since there are around 500 people gathered in one place it creates marvelous amounts of leftovers. So there are products and product waste (remaining materials). Our workshop concentrated on a circular economy concept wanted to show and introduce an alternative way to the more traditional linear economy principle. One of our goals was to make EASA also running in a circle, where all the remaining objects will be used and leftovers be reused.



All of the tutors, who create products want to collaborate with the community of Nida city. Our task was to introduce the tutors to the community and the stakeholders and by this entrusting that the made projects would remain in the area working for the community. One way to do this is to find somebody who could take care of the


projects, using it for public or commercial use, attracting people to the place and enjoying it. Looking at the remaining things after EASA ends there will be a lot of unwanted items and leftover materials. For this reason, our idea that an EASA market should be established. Where EASA participants, tutors and guests, would have

an ability to donate or sell their personal unwanted items (tents, sleeping bags, mattresses) to the community and the remaining construction materials would be given away to the local art school, where students could use the materials for their future projects.



How to make Nida’s economy much more resilient in the future? To take the task of improving Nida’s economy we invented a scenario. We were accepting and enriching an extreme situation. Taking Nida to the future and looking at the city in the year 2100. Imagining the Curorian spit without the dunes and not attractive to tourists for its natural environment. What would the city live of then, knowing that at the moment the city is 100% dependent on tourism. Nida by not having any other business fields, except for tourism is forcing itself in a complicated situation. Having only one field of income is risky and we have strong cities like Detroit (car industry) in

USA, Charleroi (depended on coal industry) in Belgium, Nova Huta in Poland (Metal industry), Visaginas (Nuclear power plant) in Lithuania, who suffered a lot when the only one field of income crashed. The chosen situation gave as an opportunity to think in creative way while facing problem solving. All in all we tried to create a vision for the city and ways to make it more mixed with attractions, less dependent from the mainland economically, and with innovative circular business ideas. All the foreign and local architecture students who gathered here, fell in love with the area easily and wanted the region to become even better and more beautiful.



BALTIC SEA REGION CONNECTION Nida can not survive on it’s own or can it? Baltic Sea region is varied with different cities all around the Laguna and by the Baltic Sea. There are 3 bigger cities and 7 smaller ones in the area. That have different things to offer for a visitor not only including the natural area’s beauty. We have Klaipėda the port city which is taking in big cruise ships, Palanga the active tourism place with a lot of offers for young people, Nida a more passive sea and laguna resort. Karklė area for the extreme water sports and Ventės ragas, where they sign and explore the migration of birds throughout the year, also including smaller villages and cities with their attractions. By not concentrating on a specific city, but collecting and offering them a whole region to visit, we would achieve longer touristic visits, migration between towns, new creative sustainable business ideas and a more varied mix of visitors which would generate income in all the fields. By making better connections of the cruise ships with bus, ferry timetable schedules, creating touristic paths for bicycles or boat connections between the cities the reach and visit would generally improve. Also not only focusing on the touristic aspect of business. The cities could share and create logistic centres, trade materials with each other creating circular economy stronger, lowering the price for import & export and overall of transferring distance and costs. As a good example we can mention the Golden circle in Iceland, which connect objects all around in a 300km area with big touristic attractions letting the visitors explore cities, natural areas places of culture and etc.





In Neringa the heating energy is produced mainly with renewable energy sources. Neringos Energija produces heat for whole Neringas area which is a great thing! By bringing Nerigas energy supply into full circle would benefit the area a lot. 100% self-efficient energy in Neringa is easy to achieve by using local biofuel made out from cut down trees and recycled waste. On top of that adapting solar panels and wind turbines on roofs, the self-efficient energy goal is reached. All this brings new jobs to Neringa, helps to promote Neringa’s beautiful, clean nature, and brings Neringa’s economy closer to a circle.

With history of agriculture Neringa could bring part of it’s history back trough urban farming. To begin with simple farming boxes that could be placed in public parks, gardens of fisher men’s huts or restaurant terraces, this urban farming would bring Neringa in top with fresh local herbs and veggies. This kind of simple wooden farming boxes are already growing fresh local food for restaurants and inhabitants for example in Helsinki, Finland, Urban farming in Neringa can grow as big as providing all the herbs and most of the vegetables that are used here with help of new technologies. For example farms using hydroponic farming technology, that is already in use for example in Graham Greens farms in New York U.S, can produce up to 30 time on same area compared to traditional farming. By attaching greenhouses using new technologies for example on the roofs of maxima supermarket and Agila cultural center in Nida will already bring Neringa closer to selfefficient food industry.

WATER CLEANING In Neringa the drinking water already goes through cleaning process that makes it possible to use tap water as drinking water. How ever there is still a lot to achieve in this field. By investing money on Neinga’s water cleaning system is part of Neringa areas promotion for it’s clean nature. The cleanest water in Lithuania is something that Neringa could be proud of. And it would also bring new jobs to Neringa.

THE DOCS OF NERINGA Due to its special location Neringa has a lot of coast line. We think that at the moment Neringa is not taking enough the coast has to offer. Since it is difficult to built on land because of all the regulations we think that Neringa could easily start promote more it’s waterfront location and start developing area more with floating structures with different programs. For example restaurant ship, floating hotel, floating residential building, floating spa, floating gardens are all something that are already used all over the world. And the best thing is that if you don’t need them anymore it is always possible to sell them since floating structures can be easily moved to different locations!

OPEN OFFICE As one of the challenges we think Neringa is facing is seasonal economy we found one great idea that is already in use and working in Nida. The Nida Art colony is great example of business that brings people to Neringa also in the winter time. This could be adapted wider in other businesses with concept of open office. Anyone from office worker, to journalists could rent a work room for a day, for a week or for a year. This idea could be also adapted easily in existing building looking for better use, for example Golden Dunes in Nida.


Grow your city. Frederica, Denmark.

Gotham city impostors. New York, The USA.

Golden circle in Iceland

Gotham city impostors. New York, The USA.

Nida art colony. Nida, Lithuaunia.


A very important part of the city’s economical perspective improvement is the focusing on sports and culture. Both of the groups could also have events during all the seasons.



BICYCLES Overall alternative transport is always good to be developed. Bicycle paths in Neringa area are quite good overall driving by the Laguna and also in the city of Nida and villages. But there are some other bicycle infrastructure elements missing. There could be developed more bicycle shelters with equipment to fix bicycles and hide from the rain, also keeping your bicycle safe if you leave it overnight. Learning from other Lithuanian resort towns, city or region tours with bicycles could be organized including the main objects, connecting cities. This would encourage tourists to come more with bicycles, practice active lifestyle and safe Neringa nature.


All in all throughout the history of Neringa region. This used to be the area for nomadic fishermen villages. Neringa has its history museums. But developing it with active routes so that not only single buildings could be visited but a connection throughout Nida and Neringa in general visiting archeological sites with some board to explain the remaining constructions or areas. Some places could develop renovation of folklore artisans, where visitors could learn and try these skills. A lot of the tribe living here had unexpectedly good craftsmanship with metal work and woodwork. This helped to create a lot of traditional houses decorations, ship decorations and even places of burial with monumental pieces. Also creating a route throughout all the changed nomadic fisherman villages with a general understanding of a nomadic lifestyle and their characters also closeness and distance from the mainland.

WINTER SPORTS One of the biggest challenges that Neringa faces is the lack of visitors during the winter season. A lot of people gather here in the cold period to go ice fishing, this time could be used to offer some winter sports in Neringa. Cross country skiing is a popular winter sport, which does not require any hills, and the flat terrain is a plus. Also using the ice formed on the Laguna to do some ice skating or hockey games, would attract wanderers. A good example is the city of Pilsen in Czech Republic, the city faced difficulties to attract people in winter time. Then they used the lake inside a city to make ice hockey games. Now the city is a popular direction for visitors during winter time.

WATER SPORTS Naturally and obviously Neringa region is surrounded by water from all the sides, but the idea of water sports is not that developed. Although there are some competitions happening during mid of summer, at other times the Laguna is almost empty. Improving this sector with various extreme sports or calmer ones would be a great improvement. Even simple rowing competitions or dragon boat competitions would attract more people.



Circular economics is about closing the circle in all the spheres. Not forgetting the social aspect of Nida. Creating some kind of an application, would it be an mobile phone application, website, billboard in aa municipality hall. The people, would it be locals or visitors need a space where they could inform

about the problems they have. At the same time it could also be used by the land owners, municipality and governmental institutions to spread new ideas. This platform in general bringing problems in one space and answering with the solutions or spreading new ideas and how to live a better life is a vital community forming aspect, which if done successfully improves the overall connection between different people living in the area and municipality.







There are a lot of unused buildings in Neringa, which EASA community used for accommodation, entertainment or just as a meeting spot. This gave us an idea, to try to figure out why none of these buildings are being taken care of and to offer a second life. The traditional architecture business scheme is working in a linear perspective which, basically means that there are a group with its needs, who choose somebody to make a design of an architectural object, which then somebody constructs (builds) and it starts to function until it is not used anybody, becomes abandoned and/or demolished. Thinking about circularity and making anything useful again, constructing from unused or remaining or leftover from demolition materials is a good way to start.


Thinking about working in a circular way the start of an architectural process it starts in the same manner. Somebody has some needs, which then gets designed, constructed and used. We get to circularity when we reach the stage, where the building is not being used anymore. And we have quite a lot of abandoned buildings in Neringa. Then we have basically two options, how a building could still be useful. First of the options is demolishing the building and using the remaining good materials to construct a new architectural object. But in this case a lot of good materials still go to waste, because of the difficulty to recycle them. A better option is to think about reconstructing or renovating an object, in accordance to the people needs in the area.


Upcycled House, Nyborg DK


LENDAGER GROUP, CPH. Danish architectural practise working on the basis of the philosophy of sustainability and circularity within the fields of architecture and urban planning, strategy and analysis, upcycled product development. In 2013, they introduced the first 100 % upcycled house in Nyborg, Denmark. A house composed by recycled materials and on the basis of the passive qualities of the building. The result was an examplary, sustainable and economically profitable house. Additionally, another significant feature about the Lendager Group is their approach to waste material. Their upcycling department is highly integrated and provides the office with upcycled, costumade products throughout the phase of construction. The material in question, in this case recycled wood from windows, doors, floors etc., undergoes different processing phases in which they are constumized for specific use. By doing so, Lendager Group reduces its use of new ressources due to waste material is one of our biggest potential.

Upcycled wooden panels


GARAGE MUSEUM, MOSCOW When it comes to existing buildings, society has to bear in mind that the construction industry is one of the biggest polluter globally. So how can we reduce our overall waste and pollution worldwide? A crucial aspect is to renovate the existing buildings. One fine example is seen in Moscow where OMA both teach us how to cope with old, fashioned unsued architecture and therefore did a transformation project on a former garage and later, old Sovjet restaurant. The most visible objects proofing renovation of the building are textures which contains old historical styles. The key element was to maintain the existing inner concrete structure, variety of tiles, brick walls etc., and only apply a new facade.


WIKIHOUSE 4.0 London based 00 Architecture presented several prefabricated livable structures on the basis of the idea of circularity. The aim was to design a universal and low cost object which is easily assembled. WikiHouse is one of the best existing examples of circular architecture. The idea is based on a public platform which is used for creating and designing buildings. The system allows to create unique templates of sectional houses according to needs. The design of a building includes manly local manufacturing, distribution and usage.


In this case, buildings are possible to exploit independently from public, city facilities. Simple and economical design leads to possibilities to recycle all the materials or rebuild it in another plot. This allows many companies to combine their innovations together to create the world’s leading, sustainable, low cost building systems, based on interoperable standards and circular economy.

GOLDEN DUNES, NIDA Currently 500 architecture students and their tutors are accommodated at a historic, old Sovjet building in Nida, Lithuania. The future of the building in question is known; it has to be demolished. The previous examples on both the transformation of the Garage, the Wikihouse and the architectural practise of Lendager Group led the group to reflect on the future for the Golden Dunes. A building that in some how is a huge catalouge of materiality in which we saw the potentials.



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The Lighthouse Paradis Dune Nida Art Colony Nida Dunes Nida Main Beach




City Planning ”Game of Powers” in action.







This book is presented to Neringa’s municipality as a gift. We enjoyed studying the idea of a circular economy and how to reflect this on Nida and Neringa. This book is not a guideline of ’how to do it in the future.’ It’s a mere vision of the collaboration of 16 enthousiastic architecture students. We hope you take in account our effort and hard work, and we hope we left you thinking about the future of Nida and Neringa. Also, we hope the products of our workshops will be used and maintained for many years. We all enjoyed our stay here! - team ’Full Circle.’


facebook.com/bringnidafullcircle/ DONATAS BALTRUÅ AITIS t. 00372 488 16883 e. donatas.baltrusaitis@gmail.com SLAVA IVANOV t. 0045 53 35 35 96 e. slava@easadenmark.dk


Profile for Bring Nida Full Circle 2016

Bring nida full circle | EASA 2016  

EASA 2016 Workshop with focus on the principles of circular economy tutored by Urban planners Donatas Baltrusaitis and Viacheslav Ivanov. N...

Bring nida full circle | EASA 2016  

EASA 2016 Workshop with focus on the principles of circular economy tutored by Urban planners Donatas Baltrusaitis and Viacheslav Ivanov. N...