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São Paulo

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Some people are imagining a different São Paulo, one where authorities could redefine the landscape and the urbanism by giving consideration to the logistics of traffic and the lives of the people who live within its walls. In Brazil’s capital, seven million vehicles drive every day.

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Artist and photographer Felipe Morozini, alongside others such as architect Marcio Kogan, artist Paulo von Poser, and six urban planners, are aiming to permanently shut down one of the city’s ugliest landmarks: the “minhocão” (or “big worm”) Elevado Costa e Silva, a thin swath of concrete that scars the downtown area, turning buildings into sponges for pollution and noise, and their inhabitants into victims of the superiority of traffic over humans.

The aim is to turn the “worm” into a park, with a bicycle lane and greenery, giving life back to the people who live around it and to the city as a whole.

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For now, the speedway closes on Sundays, which allows the public to reclaim it temporarily, and that has been a big success. The Associação do Parque do Minhocão aims to start closing it on Saturdays and, step-by-step, day by day, to institute a full closure and renaissance. Morozini is inspired by what New York did with the High Line in the Meatpacking District, and he believes it will take much more effort in São Paulo, but he is positive it will work in the end.

Almost everyone I know supports this enterprise, and I also wish them good luck!

For more information, visit minhocao.org.

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Photos: Courtesy of Paola de Orleans e Bragança

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