The role of technology in placemaking


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This pattern can be seen in London, here the West End is shown according to a hierarchy of pedestrian access from red as the most accessible through to blue for least accessible.

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We constructed a spatial model of the city to understand its accessibility patterns and to test strategic design ideas.

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An objective spatial model of the area was produced that accurately reflected the isolated nature of the old Sqaure design with the key pedestrian routes identified at the edges of the Square rather than passing through its landscaped heart. The image on the left describes the spatial structure of Trafalgar Square before the redesign, showing how isolated the core of the Square was by passing pedestrians workers and tourists. The image on the right shows how the pedestrianisation of the northern side of the Square and the provision of a central staircase would open up the whole of the area up to ‘through movement’, enlivening the public space and shortening pedestrian journeys.

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The current design is a result of redevelopment in the early 20th century. It is based on a formal layout with a central axis from nowhere to the Town Hall. permeability from the surrounding streets into the centre of the square is very low caused by walls surrounding the central area.

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As a result movement levels within the centre of the square are very low, people tend to move along its edges.

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We also observed what we call stationary activity in and around the square, differentiating between different user groups during different times of the day. Afternoon low no of people in centre, waterfeature is attraction for kids, but very difficult to interact with. Evening children and elderly leave the area, youth and adult groups come together in groups

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The study informed and supported the new design of the square which will go on site this summer.

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The study informed and supported the new design of the square which will go on site this summer.

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The study informed and supported the new design of the square which will go on site this summer.

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The role of technology in placemaking Boston LivableStreets Alliance 25th May 2011 Tim Stonor @Tim_Stonor

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Thinking spatially The Earth as a spatial network Much of the earth’s landmass is continuously connected.

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Urban centres as intense parts of the spatial network

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Analysing urban space

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A network whose connections are driven by the geometry of buildings (and other ‘obstructions’) Spatial network analysis

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Spatial hierarchy in the axial network

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Urban functioning Pedestrian flow scan Tower Hamlets People per hour 450 to 900 250 to 450 150 to 250 100 to 150 50 to 100 0 to 50

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Urban functioning Vehicle flow scan Bloomsbury

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Research shows that 60-80% of movement flows are due to the structure of the network, measured by spatial accessibility. More accessible places get more movement Key discovery #1 Spatial layout shapes urban movement

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In brief same input ‘Through’ movement

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Key discovery #2 Spatial accessibility shapes land use As cities evolve, land uses exploit spatial accessibility. Movement-sensitive land uses locate on movement-rich streets. Less movement-sensitive uses locate around the corner. In this way, cities organise themselves, mixing land uses in a natural way that people understand intuitively.

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Suppressed movement economy. Enhanced movement economy. Main street, mixing global & local movement. Fast highways, separating global & local movement. The cost of access Fast highways not “Main Streets”

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Centre vitality £ % Street quality Property value Residential security Personal safety Urban layout Key discovery #3 Space shapes economic performance Space Syntax shows that spatial layouts have powerful, social, economic & environmental properties that can be measured objectively.

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Architecture Town Planning Urban economics Criminology Urban Design Transport Planning Landscape Architecture Social Anthropology Space Space/form Function Design The common domain of space

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Sao Paulo Space Syntax Making sense of space at every scale

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Diagnosis Understand spatial accessibility Measure the accessibility of the movement network, to understand the hierarchy of routes.

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Prognosis Test, develop and propose options

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Prognosis Test, develop and propose options

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Prognosis Test, develop and propose options

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UCL Space Syntax Laboratory Fundamental research Teaching Technology development Space Syntax Limited Strategic consulting Internship Technology development People Ideas Questions Research & practice A process of mutual exploitation

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Stephenson Quarter Design concept Spatial Accessibility Pedestrian Approaches to Site / Desire Lines through Site Block layout: SSL option 01 Pedestrian Approach to Site / Desire Lines through Site

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Trafalgar Square, London

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Trafalgar Square, London Low levels of space use

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Trafalgar Square, London Pedestrian survey

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Trafalgar Square, London Spatial accessibility model

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© Crown Copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number: LA100032379 To Leicester Square & Covent Garden To the South Bank To Buckingham Palace & St James Park To Leicester Square, Piccadilly & St James Design issue Movement was pushed around the edges of the Square by the physical design of the space such as indirect staircase links. Design strategy The design strategy, developed with Foster + Partners, was to bring movement through the heart of the Square via a new, central staircase. Trafalgar Square, London Urban design concept

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Before After Trafalgar Square, London Spatial accessibility analysis

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Trafalgar Square, London Artist’s impression

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First day of opening Trafalgar Square, London

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Trafalgar Square, London New central staircase

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Observe Explain Forecast Deliver Trafalgar Square, London Spatial design process

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Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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SPACE SYNTAX STUDY 2004 INFORMAL SEATING WAITING Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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All pedestrians 20:00-21:00 All pedestrians 14:00-16:00 sitting LEGEND standing Adult Youth Child Elderly AFFECTION WATER FEATURE Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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Nottingham, England Old Market Square

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Core services Baseline analysis Undertaking studies to understand the existing form & functioning of buildings & urban areas Strategic design solutions Forming sustainable visions to deliver social & economic objectives Planning support Supporting design proposals with evidence of efficacy Diagnosis Prognosis Delivery

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Value of property security Socio-economic costs A B –£1,590,000 +£691,000

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Value of personal security Assigning costs B A +£14,500 pa +£3,200 pa

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4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9 5 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 singlesNC/MDn 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Tax band Y = 4.502 + .114 * X; R^2 = .99 Spatial accessibility & property value Spatial accessibility

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i-VALUL Town centre vitality Economic factor Zone A Rent Spatial factor Centre – Context ratio i-VALUL shows how well laid out town centres: reduce the need for travel and promote local activity. connect businesses with customers and employees. provide inclusive places for local communities. Town centres are spatially distinguishable from non-centres. The formation process leads to different centres types (popular or selective centres). One main factor is the centre – context relationship. Sustainable town centres need a good street layout.

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UrbanValue Layout valuation tools   To measure & visualise layout indicators i-VALUL has developed UrbanValue a suite of software tools that value the effects of urban layouts and social and economic outcomes including crime patterns and land values. A training programme for project partners has been undertaken and the tools are currently being tested by local authorities and community users in different contexts and at different scales across the Greater South East.

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Elephant & Castle Defragmenting & Reconnecting

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Elephant & Castle Area layout framework

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Elephant & Castle Proof of concept – linkage modelling

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Elephant & Castle A new ‘High Street’ centre Courtesy of Foster and Partners 2004

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Elephant & Castle Pedestrian flow forecasting

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Elephant & Castle Southern Crossing

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Elephant & Castle Southern Crossing

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80% Say Yes

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التحديات معاناة المشاة Jeddah Weaknesses

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مشروع المركز المدني لجدة تحليل الموقع مكونات الخطة الرئيسية Components of the masterplan Composite

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The historic centre in its new context: the global view Existing Old local plans New plan The analysis also shows that if the transformation of the central area is combined with careful planning of the wider area of Jeddah, the whole structure of the city will be drawn back from the east and north towards to historic centre. At the same time, the patches of unplanned settlement will become more integrated into the urban fabric.

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Jeddah Planning Code Primary boulevards

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Congress Street Marrimac Street New Chardon Street Canal Street Friend Street Portland Street Cambridge Street New Sudbury Street Hanover Street Salem Street Tremont St State Street Union Street North Street William F McClellan Highway Surface Road Cross Street Richmond Street Faneuil Hall Marketplace Haymarket City Hall Plaza T T T T T State Government Center Bowdoin T Court St Cornhill Street Franklin Ave Washington Mall Lincoln Institute of Land Policy Space Syntax © 2011 25 24 14 15 16 19 20 21 28 29 22 23 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 48 46 47 51 52 50 53 54 55 56 57 58 Previously observed sites 14 to 16 and 19 to 25 = 10 New sites 28 to 58 = 31 Total sites = 41 49 Boston, City Hall Plaza Proposed survey locations

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Tim Stonor architect & town planner Managing Director, Space Syntax Limited Lincoln Loeb Fellow, Harvard University Twitter @Tim_Stonor Blog LinkedIn Contact details

Tags: space syntax architecture planning urban design social economic environmental vitality performance