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Observation tour of our study sites : Parque Calderón, San Sebastián, La Cruz del Vado

Researchers of the project "Cultural Heritage, Leisure, and Tourism: Analysis of Consensus and Disputes in the Use and Enjoyment of Public Space" conducted a fascinating tour on Friday, February 9, 2024, exploring some of the city's most emblematic public spaces: Calderón Park, San Sebastián Park, and La Cruz del Vado.

The day, marked by non-participatory observation, allowed researchers to immerse themselves in the unique atmosphere of these sites. Accompanied by a delegate from the Historic Areas Directorate of GAD Cuenca, participants not only toured these spaces but also delved into the stories and intricacies of their management and preservation.

The delegate shared valuable insights about the challenges and opportunities in managing these historic places, from operating permits to the implementation of projects aimed at harmonizing heritage preservation with the needs of a modern city.

The tour revealed the complexity of urban dynamics in the historic center. Researchers firsthand observed how various facets of daily life coexist in these spaces: residents with their daily routines, the hustle and bustle of commerce, influences of politics and the local economy, the coming and going of transport, the constant flow of tourists, and artistic expressions that add color and life to every corner.

This experience not only served to identify and prioritize the sections subject to study within the project but also highlighted the importance of public spaces as settings where multiple interests intersect and the stories of a community are woven. The detailed observation of these interactions provides key insights to understand how the meaning of cultural heritage is constructed and negotiated in the contemporary urban context.

Ph credit: PREIT-tour

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