Monday, January 3, 2011

Urban Design

What is Urban design?

Urban design is the glue that connects the disciplines of architecture and planning. The architect is primarily concerned with the spatial relations of an urban environment, and the planner with public policy issues. The Urban designer combines these two elements to create a cohesive and implementable vision for the urban environment.

Urban design an individual entity is a relatively new discipline, whereas for centuries the relationship between the individual building and the public realm was an integral concept known to architects and designers, until the 20th century this relationship was 'lost' then 'rediscovered'. It was 'lost' during the early 20th century with the advent of modernism and its obsession with the building as an object; thus completely neglecting the building/public realm relationship. Additionally the massive urban redevelopment projects post WWII destroyed entire precincts within cities and replacing them with buildings embracing modernist principles further neglecting the public realm.

The concept of Urban design was 'rediscovered' during the the late 1960's in response to the failure of post WWII projects, ultimately returning to the integral relationship between the individual building and the public realm.

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