Introduction In Section 1 Iwill be discussing the methodological framework of Kim Dovey’s interpretationand the space syntax method pioneered by Bill Hillier and Julienne Hanson. Section 2 willrationalise the concept of Habitus, the resulting social behavior from which individuals perceive the socialworld around them. Section3 Case study Barcelona Section4 Case study Nottingham Section 1 – AnalyticalFramework Space Syntax Space Syntax is the theory of space(Dursun, 2007:4) pioneered by Professor Bill Hillier and Professor JulienneHanson in the 1970s (Space Syntax Network, 2017: np) and will be used as abaseline to form urbanistic parameters that are adapted to better suit thisessay. It was initially developed as an instrument for urban planning tounderstand the relationship between humans and the space around them,subsequently creating efficient environments adapted to its users (Weilguni, 2011: 15). The development of the syntactical method later on resulted in theuse of computer software where they could analyse larger urban systems (Weilguni,2011: 16). In the analysis, spacesyntax will be combined with other methods of analysis as there are dimensionsof the method that cannot be used.
Hillier and Hanson’s research investigatesthe relationship between the spatial layout and social occasions, portrayinghow the architecture of the city is held together by a network of space. (Space Syntax, 2012). The key methods used in their research that I have chosen to use aremovement patterns, human activity, and social interaction studies. (SpaceSyntax Network, 2017: np). In order to broaden the scope of Space Syntax, memory studies andidentity of space will be used to complement the existing methodologicalframework.
Movement – generic function ofstreet spaces (Al Sayed et al, 2014: 11) axial representation reveals localnetwork structure of street spaces (Al Sayed et al, 2014: 12). Human activity & social interaction There are restrictions in usingall characteristics that Hillier and Hanson have set out in their Space Syntaxapproach, hence only choosing the limited methods named above. Such data thatis collected by their scientific technology is not accessible with theresources available, therefore, cross referencing against Kim Dovey’s frameworkwill allow creation of my own hybrid analytical framework. FramingPlaces Methods of spatial syntax analysisrepresent an attempt to reveal a deep social structuring of architecturalspace. The Syntax analysis translates the plan into a diagram of how life andsocial encounter is framed within it (Dovey, 2009: 106). The action within thisspace is structured and shaped by the walls framed by the decisions ofdesigners, thus, built form constructs and frames meanings (Dovey, 2008: 1). FRAMING Kim Dovey, in his ‘Framing Places’, (2008: 18)expresses how Hillier and Hanson are seeking to uncover deep socio-spatialstructures, the ‘genotypes’ of architecture. Genotypes are clusters of spatialsegments structured in certain arrangements, the foundations of how we perceivethe space.
Dovey sets out his own keycharacteristics of an urban space, a format that can be used for analyticalobservations. Dovey states that the ideas do not constitute to a theory andshould not be read as deterministic because you cannot predict the events ofhumans in a space. Orientation, Public/Private, Access, History, Identity,Scale and Place are a selection of the rules that establish Dovey’s list ofpragmatic analytical methods that are detailed below. The orientation of thearchitecture guides people through spatial framings of life, realigning ourattention and perceptions (Dovey, 2008:18). The arrangement of axes controlsthe movement of people, governing the chosen paths through the space. Publicity and privacy aresegments of space that act as routes through a place moving from actions undersurveillance to private actions.
This can be shown in the precedent Ospedaledegli Innocenti in Florence, a renaissance foundling hospital designed byFilippo Brunelleschi. (Moughtin, 2007: 103) Starting outside the building in apublic area, you move up the stairs through a set of arches into a semi-public courtyardspace and then entering into the private space of the building. Cities are combinations ofbuildings held together by a network of spaces flowing in-between theblocks (Al Sayed et al, 2014:7). Access to a place establishes boundaries thatcan segregate spaces by status, gender, race, culture, class and age, creatingpockets of community and amenity (Dovey, 2008:18). This can be seen in === wherethere is direct access between contested zones which are used on mass bytourists. History is highlighted through therepresentation of the building. Historically constructed meanings can be naturalizedto legitimize authority.
Identity – from an architectural perspectiveidentity arises from the belonging to a particular place. Through this attachmentto places, individuals derive a sense of belonging that gives meaning to theirlives. (Wennberg, 2015: 7-8) Scale – A dominant built volume signifies Place – the experience of placehas the capacity to ‘ground’ our being, and renders it vulnerable to theideological appropriations of power.
Dovey, · Orientation· Public/private· Access· Identity – when people know what it is used for· Dominant – scale· Place Syntax· Movement patterns shaped by layout· Security and insecurity affected by layout· Spatial segregation & socialdisadvantage· Buildings create more interactiveorganisational cultures From the studies of space syntax,architects are able to simulate effects of their designs thus allowing fordevelopment and new ideas for future designs (Space Syntax Network, 2017, np). Thesedesigns can be used to determine the actions of humans and how they perceivespaces. SociologyBuildings are composed of a series of spaces; each space has at leastone link to other spaces.
The structural properties that comprise these spacesand links might have an embedded social meaning that has implications on theoverall behaviour of human habitat. (Al Sayed et al, 2014:7) Bourdieu’s focus on the social world has alwaysbeen a drive in sociology. This uses a variety of rules such as socialinteraction, everyday life and social behaviour (Jenkins, 2002: 67) Habitus is a system of embodieddispositions, tendencies that organize the ways in which individuals perceivethe social world around them and how they react to it in certain ways(Bourdieu, 1990: 52). Habitus is not a result of free will nor is it defined bythe structures but a result of the connection between both; dispositions areboth shaped by past events and structures which affect the condition of our ownperceptions. (Bourdieu 1984:170). Additionally, the disposition is often sharedwith the community rather than the individual alone. In relation to Space Syntax, Bourdieuargued that the Habitus acquired through the imitation of the reflected groupculture with mixed personal histories, shaped the body and the mind and in theprocess shaped social actions (Mupepi, 2017:79). BarcelonaPLACE 1.
Barcelona wallBarcelona’s urban characteristicsand tourist assets are the result of a long and complex evolution. Barcelona has been a historicallycontested urban environment and has often been the centre for social unrest (Casellas, 2009: 816). In the mid 1800’s the population of Barcelona increased by 40 percent.Therefore, to accommodate this growth the Madrid Government were compelled togive permission for the removal of the Barcelona wall, opening up possibilityfor urban expansion. (Casellas, 2009: 819). The again in 1940 the population increased by 61 percent andsubsequently this unplanned urban growth was accompanied with socialsegregation and urban conflict. (Casellas, 2009: 827). The present structure of the city is divided into defined sections, theCiutat Vella District and the L’Eixample (Casellas, 2009: 816).
2. Eixample and old city The first district is the medieval area ofwinding streets and ancient buildings of the Ciutat Vella, the old city,district. The second district is the L’Eixample, a residential and servicedistrict that consists of nineteenth and twentieth century extensions of thecity under Ildefons Cerda’s plan of 1859. (Casellas, 2009: 816). The contrast between L’Eixample and CiutatVella is vast with the smaller winding streets of the Old city having no symmetricalor geometrical patterns compared to the structured layout of L’Eixample.
Figure— shows L’Eixample to the west of Plaça de Catalunya and Ciutat Vella to theEast, highlighting the key structural differences. CIUTATVELLA The Ciutat Vella is the oldest part of Barcelonaincluding 5 districts with the southern area bordering the sea. It homes thefamous La Rambla street which was laid out in 1766, connecting Placa deCatalunya to the port vell. EIXAMPLE L’Eixample, the core of the city, featuresa grid like layout with structured streets and blocks, designed by IldefonsCerdà with the commencement of the Cerdà Plan. The Cerdà Plan is a prominentpart in the history of urban planning, regarded as a scientific approach becauseof the Space Syntax method (Porta, 2011:1473). CerdaPlan The central government of Madrid commissioned Ildefons Cerda to study theextension of Barcelona and the renovation of the old city – the Cerda Plan. The planning design resulted in octagonal blocks with chamfered cornersallowing the streets to open up to 20 meters wide (Casellas, 2009: 819).
The attempted vision for the project was to create gardens and green spaces inevery block through the city, but this was not supported due to the power ofconservative members who had a strong influence on the council’s decision. Thisresulted in the rejection of the green spaces on the valuable real estate land (Casellas,2009: 819), mainly allowed by Porcioles in the 1960’s during his time in office(Casellas,2009: 827). The street structure created from the Cerda Plan is still visible almost150 years after its commission even though the spatial consideration has runits own course not conceived by the original planner (Porta, 2011:1474). Despite only having 90 percent of thenewly constructed housing complying with Cerda’s guidance, the connection ofthe districts was successful with direct links between the L’Eixample and the CiutatVella with Plaça de Catalunya at its heart. 3. Plaça de Catalunya Plaça de Catalunya is the connectionbetween the Ciutat Vella (Old City) and the 19th century modernistL’Eixample (Oh Barcelona, 2010), and was created in 1925-1927 by Puig ICadafalch (A View on Cities, 2017). Originallythe square was the demolition site to one of the many city walls before the constructionof housing. The housing was eventually bought by the local council along withthe land for the creation of Plaça de Catalunya.
The square is now a hub of transport and the mainlink connecting to the most famous streets in Barcelona, and for this reason itis considered the heart of the city and point of reference in order toorientate round the city. SPACE 1. Access Some of the cities most important streets and avenues meet at Plaçade Catalunya, for example Passeig de Gracia, Rambla de Catalunya, La Rambla andPortal de l’Angel. In total, the square has a connection to 9 streets with themost famous being La Rambla.
:32 South of Plaça de Catalunya, there are theboulevards that run down to Port Vell on the Mediterranean Sea, commonly knownas La Rambla. This provides a main link to the centre of the city, and alsoconnects 2 regions of the Ciutat Vella. Las Ramblas is vibrant with many shopsand cafes, a very commercialised street, where the shops thrive off how thestreet has become so pedestrianized and full of tourists. The connection ofthis to the Plaça Catalunya provides a huge opportunity for people to filterthrough the square and so providing access The Plaça does not literally take the formof a square, with a skewed edge on the South pointing to Las Ramblas. 2. Public & Private3.
Orientation Thelarge compass rose marks the centre of the square, framed by characteristicbuildings surrounding it. BUILDINGUSAGE El corteingles and the bank 4. Movement5. Scale The one-way street on the North East ofthe square, Ronda de Sant Pere, passes all the way through the Plaça towardsthe West leading straight down to the University, allowing traffic to runeasily minimalizing congestion. Thehalf pedestrianised street of Passeig de Gràcia runs North West from the squarebeing one of the most prominent avenues in Barcelona. The avenue contains someof Barcelona’s most valued pieces of architecture and most prestigious shoppingthus being the central part of L’Eixample. Plaça de Catalunya connects all theimportant avenues and routes, therefore allowing people to commute around thecity at ease. All the roadspassing through the square have pedestrian pavements of similar size adjacentto them.
This establishes the pedestrianized environment that Place deCatalunya strives to create. The square is entirely pedestrianized with novehicular access through the middle. STRUCTURE OF SQUARE. Surrounding thesquare are a multitude of buildings that frame the Plaça. Much like Kim Doveysuggests (2008:18) built form orientates how we see a space, reorienting itssubjects through spatial framings of everyday life.
The large scaled buildingsthat overlook the square channel our views to the centre of Plaça de Catalunya,placing people and our actions under surveillance. The channelling of peopleinto the square enhances social encounter, bringing a variety subjects such associal status, gender, race culture age and class. The primary researchundertaken at Plaça de Catalunya shows that the majority of people were betweenthe age of 16-35, with an equal split in gender. Noticeably, pushchairs weresituated around the square highlighting that infants were present too. Nottingham Wider Context Old Market Square stands at thecentre of Nottingham, an area introduced by William Peveril, and laterredesigned by Architect Thomas Cecil Howitt, as a neutral ground for the 2boroughs of Nottingham. Additionally, Old Market Square was used on occasion forseasonal activities originally hosting the Goosefair up until 1927 and thedaily market until 1928 where it was repositioned in the Victoria Centre toallow for redevelopment of the square (BBC Nottingham, 2008). The Council Housestands at the head of Market square, a building once known as The Exchangebefore it was deemed the Civic Government Headquarters of Nottingham(Nottingham City Council, 2016).
The council house depicts a 1920’s interpretation ofneoclassical design (Teece, 2007) with the Exchange arcade housinga Neo-Baroque style (The Exchange, 2016). Neoclassicism was predominantin European architecture from the late 18th century to the early 19thcentury, including styles from Ancient Greece and Rome. An order appeared inneoclassicism (Visual-arts, 2016) and to provide a sense of balance and harmonythe elements were arranged symmetrically (Serenbetz,2016). It is the revival of classicalarchitecture, and is characterized by the magnificence of scale, and simplicityof the geometric forms (Encyclopedia, 2013). The neoclassical style was asymbol of national pride and achievement, usually reflecting the politicalnature of their function (Cole, 2014). Bibliography Websites A View on Cities. (2017). Plaçade Catalunya.
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