Sharsharh National Park

The site is interesting for the presence of important natural elements like the rocky terrain, the wadi, the topography, and it can also show a very important plantation of pine woods.
The motivation of the present proposal is because of the prevision of the future realization of a National Park of Sharsharh, through adequation of facilities and services and consolidation of green structure.

The size is approximately 118 ha in extension, and it includes a former camping site on the Southern side. An existing military site will remain in use by the administration, therefore it will not be included in the present study.
The proposal for a park will include leisure facilities and services in Sharsharh, relating to the surroundings of the city of Tarhuna.

The existing site, a hilly portion of land amidst Mediterranean vegetation, is occupied for the biggest part by pine woods, and therefore it already has a great potential for developing vegetation.
The area of Tarhuna has been protagonist of very different stories during the years. It has been a place of contamination. From Romans to Gozo people, to end with Italians. All these events left something in the area, In the north the most admirable ruins of roman influence are visible in Leptis Magna. In the site of Shahrsharh there are remnants of a roman villa with mosaics close to the falls (near military site) with a roman road getting there, which was discovered in the 1940’s, and then the remnants of the Turkish fort based on a former roman temple. Of the same roman period is the oven still existing on the north of the falls.
Around the city of Tarhuna a large number of archaeological sites are to be found (around 800 spots), with different character and value.
In the closer surroundings, agricultural plantations on a prominent scale were started by the Italians as a general economical strategy. Later in the period 1960‐1970 a forestation plan interested the site of Sharsharh.
But natural resources as Sharsharh falls, which used to be admirable in the pictures of the Italian period, are today much less noticeable because they became harsh. Only during wintertime water is running in a visible way.

The main character of the park is given by the presence of three different elements:
‐ an extensive pine – wood forest, which covers most of the surface of the park;
‐ the presence of a very dramatic Wadi that goes across the park;
‐ the topography, extremely varied but still in a pedestrian scale.

To arrange a park on this environment means to articulate these three elements in order to make them very present and visible to the users of the park.
On the former camp site the focus is to maintain the existing patrimony of trees (mainly pine trees and eucalyptus trees), organizing some buildings and services around the existing green structure. The design proposal aims to create a ring system of circulation and fruition of the park, which will limit concentration of use, in favour of small and scattered stopping places in the pine woods.
Buildings for services and facilities are mainly concentrated on the southern entrance, for easiness of use and logistics.

The provision of a recreational park in the eastern hills will concentrate uses on a peripheral site. Pedestrian meandering paths will connect different parts of the park. Green open spaces will be integrated in a very seamless way to the existing pine woods.

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