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Meaningful urban design: Teleological/catalytic/relevant

Inam, Aseem ORCID: 2002. Meaningful urban design: Teleological/catalytic/relevant. Journal of Urban Design 7 (1) , pp. 35-58. 10.1080/13574800220129222

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The paper begins with a critique of contemporary urban design: the field of urban design is vague because it is an ambiguous amalgam of several disciplines, including architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning and civil engineering; it is superficial because it is obsessed with impressions and aesthetics of physical form; and it is practised as an extension of architecture, which often implies an exaggerated emphasis on the end product. The paper then proposes a meaningful (i.e. truly consequential to improved quality of life) approach to urban design, which consists of: being teleological (i.e. driven by purposes rather than defined by conventional disciplines); being catalytic (i.e. generating or contributing to long-term socio-economic development processes); and being relevant (i.e. grounded in first causes and pertinent human values). The argument is illustrated with a number of case studies of exemplary urban designers, such as Michael Pyatok and Henri Ciriani, and urban design projects, such as Horton Plaza and Aranya Nagar, from around the world. The paper concludes with an outline of future directions in urban design, including criteria for successful urban design projects (e.g. striking aesthetics, convenient function and long-term impact) and a proposed pedagogical approach (e.g. interdisciplinary, in-depth and problem-driven).

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Architecture
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 12 March 2019
Last Modified: 25 Oct 2022 13:43

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