UD 514 Spring’08 IYTE
2nd Week Summary Submission
URBAN DESIGN: DEFINITIONS, DIMENSIONS, ROLES
In articles (Schurch, T.W. Reconsidering Urban Design and Gosling, D. Definitions of Urban Design), different considerations and definitions of Urban Design as a field are emphasized through Urban Planning, Architecture and Landscape Architecture.
In his article, reconsidering Urban Design, T.W. Schurch is looking for answer of what defines Urban Design. While reading, anyone can easily recognize his considerations about Urban Design in the point of his field, since he is a landscape architect. In general, he describe Urban Desing compassing Planning, Architecture and Landscape Architecture.
When one looks at literature what it tells about Urban Design, he probably faces discussions about Urban Design has continued for few decades. For instance, according to Kevin Lynch, Urban Design is thought to be a branch of Architecture. Also for Mackey, Urban Design can be recognized by its absence. Similar to this, Alan Kreditor attemps to find out what it is not.
For better understanding, T.W. Schurch divides definitions into five categories; fundamental, superficial and cursory, qualitative and prescriptive, historic, proprietary and process. In these five, he fills his answers about Urban Design with the help of different fields. While he tells it is the composition of Architecture, he also defends its inclusion of Landscape Architecture as well as buildings and rural areas as well as cities.
Furthermore, he tries to explain practical considerations that concerns specific types of design joints referred as “threshold of scale” in possible interrelated project scales;
The site-specific scale of an individual land parcel: Occupation of Arch.
Neighbourhood or distirict: Occupation of U.Design
An entire city: Occupation of U.Design
The region in which a city lies: Occupation of Planning
Corridors: Occupation of Planning
In order to make comprehensive understanding, he emphasizes the relation between Urban Design and every single of other 3; Planning, Architecture and Landscape Architecture. Architecture contribution is examplified by building facades and complexes, semi-public spaces, historic preservation, waterfront development, street layout and so on. In contrast, Landscape Architecture approach assembling building masses and sensitively manupilations relationship of space and mass. At least partially fills a void in shaping Urban Design that Architecture could not or would not. Similarly, Urban Planning adresses social and functional concerns beyond solutions of physical design.
Briefly, finding “common ground” is considered possible solution. Design at one scale requires consideration of the context of the other scale. For instance, design activity concerning a street, would require consideration of neighbourhood that the street lies in. Similarly, consideration of individual building in neighbourhood. On the other hand, not only Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecure stand alone as professions important to Urban Design, but also Civil Engineering, Law, Real Estate, disciplines in the Natural and Social Science are important.
To sum up T.W. Schurch’s view, Urban Design is merging particular aspects of Architecture, Urban Planning and Landscape Architecture potentially to form a true field.
In his article, definition of urban design, David Gosling as an architect he tries to show the great impact of Architecture on Urban Design.
According to him, so far, through history, building typologies determine the form of the city, including total infrastructure, transportation, open spaces, public and private realm. In general, city is thought to be “built environment” and open spaces are “the rest of them urban form”.
Necessarily, he is looking for the answer of what the aims and limitations of urban designer’s activity are. He explains that by placing Architecture in the middle of Urban Design. For instance, in the context of Urban Design as internal space, he tells about Rob Krier who sets out an interesting theory relating to the design of interior space. His interior space design shows in the horizental geometric ground plan forms square, triangle, circle and amorphous figures and in the vertical possibilities of transportation of these basic elements.
To sum up David Gosling’s approach, Architecture is considered as the primary element in the construction of the city.