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The Highway of Brotherhood and Unityas a Cross-Cut into the Yugoslavian Epic
The Highway of Brotherhood and Unity - the motto of Yugoslav Communists – may help us decode the multiple layers of meaning interlocked in the built environment. Undoubtedly, construction of the Highway was organic to national cohesion. Built by brigades of young volunteers, the Highway allowed a one-day trip across Yugoslavia: an experiential approach of the common motherland by which “federalism” acquired a concrete dimension. From an architect’s viewpoint, our contribution lays claim to a project-oriented approach to the Highway as a coherent built-up form, posing new technical problems, yet orienting urban change and opening up a whole range of narratives. To do that, we oscillate back and forth actual construction of the Highway - combining engineering, landscape design, urbanism and architecture - and its role as a catalyst of new collective perceptions and behavioural patterns. The Highway provided the centre of gravity for a far-reaching cross-cultural venture, a large-scale collective work of art.