Planning the Unplanned: the Paradox of Creating Urbanity
2008 (English)Conference paper (Other academic)
There are an increasing number of city building projects, which in the wake of modernistic planning are trying to create an “urban atmosphere”. However, these planned environments are in general too one-sided in terms of their functional diversity, too neat in their creation of public spaces, and too empty of people to meet the various definitions of urbanity. Still, the architects behind these projects portray their creations as urban. What we encounter is in fact a problem that is well captured by the theory of perspectivism. In particular there is a wide gap between how I as a city dweller experience and relate to the built environment, on the one hand, and how practicing architects understand the concept of urbanity, on the other. In this paper I introduce how I explore this gap between ideals and realities in my forthcoming thesis. In short, I am moving back and forth between two fix- points – one the Body of the Walker, the other the Eye of the Architect – all with the hope of eventually reaching a synthesis. The problem is well captured by the opposed forces of Apollo and Dionysus, where the first perspective represents planning and architecture, while the latter symbolizes urbanity. The outcome will be a number of paradoxes related to the task of “creating urbanity”: a/ planning the unplanned; b/ creating dynamic social processes through the manipulation of physical form; and c/ generating chaos through order.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Social and Economic Geography
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-99529OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-99529DiVA: diva2:208073
Session: Spaces of architecture/architects of space, 2008 RGS/IBG Annual Conference, August 27-29, 2008, London, England