The Fundaciòn Ria intends to contribute ideas and research for the sustainable development of the Ria de Arousa region by setting up a dialogue with the regions administrative, industrial, educational and social organisations. The foundation aims to enhance the economic developments necessary for the region, while protecting its quality and way of life.
The evolution of the Ría de Arousa can be explained by observing the change in relation between people and the sea. In the past, life in the Ria was existed in a cycle where there was relative balance between the built and natural environments and where economic activities played a connecting role.
In the last decades, rapid urban development has disrupted the balance of this cycle, prioritising short-term economic gain, often destroying the natural environment and people’s relationship with it. These developments can be illustrated by a number of factors; large-scale industry that both absorb local jobs and local knowledge, and often heavily pollute the Ria; the development of private, non-accessible port zones between town and sea; and the proliferation of housing and hospitality developments along the coast that have been built out of scale and context, disrupting an otherwise attuned urban and natural landscape.
These developments often fail to be addressed because they are considered as a series of disconnected problems affecting and accountable to only one or another municipality or sector. The foundation’s strategic vision is to consider the Ría de Arousa as a single territorial unit with a unique ecology, blurring the boundaries between different municipalities and economic sectors and identifying common problems and potentials for development.
After initial funding from David Chipperfield Architects, Fundaciòn Ria aims to fund its activities through partnerships with public and private entities, from development and research funds, and from charitable donations.