Urban square


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This presentation is about urban squares in cities and towns. They acts as gathering and interaction spaces for public. They are also called as civic center, city square, urban square, market square, public square, piazza, plaza.

Published in: Design, Technology, Real Estate

Urban square

  1. 1. UrbanSquare Urban Square: • Urban square is an open public space used for community gatherings • The first urban formations appeared 6000 years ago • City squares were established at the cross roads of important trade routes • Major places of worship were placed on squares, also used as markets • Served as an opportunity to exercise the power of rulers with military processions and parades
  2. 2. UrbanSquare Function of Squares: • Creates a gathering place for the people • Providing them with a shelter against the traffic • Freeing them from the tension of rushing through the web of street • Represents as a psychological parking place within the civic landscape
  3. 3. UrbanSquare Reasons for development of Squares: • Climatic conditions • Societal structure and psychological attitude of people • led to a form of public life – and life in public • Made street and square the natural locale for community activities and representation
  4. 4. UrbanSquare Factors that formulate the Square: • On the relation between the forms of the surrounding buildings • On their uniformity or their variety • On their absolute dimensions • On relative proportions in comparison with width and length of the open area • On the angle of entering the streets
  5. 5. UrbanSquare Squares – A part of living organism • A Square is never completed • Some may vanish, be destroyed. Others may be replaced and new ones added • A square, an accumulation of important buildings in past may have developed into comprehensible form now • Elements of square such as surrounding structures, monuments are subjected to flux of time
  6. 6. UrbanSquare Reasons for changes in Square • Physically through the erection of new buildings & the alteration or destruction of old ones • Through a modification of the building line • Psychologically, through the different way in which each generation experiences
  7. 7. UrbanSquare The Archetypes • Square consists of three space confining elements • Surrounding structures, floor and the imaginary sphere of the sky above • Elements are decisively defined by the two-dimensional layout of square • These three factors that produce final three dimensional effect may vary in themselves
  8. 8. UrbanSquare Classification of Squares • Closed Square – Space self contained • Dominated Square – Space directed • Nuclear Square – Space formed around a centre • Grouped Squares – Space units combined • Amorphous Square – Space unlimited • Squares doesn't represent only one pure type, but very often bears the characteristics of two of these types
  9. 9. UrbanSquare Closed Square: • It is a complete enclosure interrupted only by the streets leading to it • Primary element of any closed square is its layout of regular geometrical form • The repetition of identical houses or house types, facing the enclosed area • Spatial balance of the square will always be achieved by the equation of horizontal & vertical forces
  10. 10. UrbanSquare Closed Square: Place des Vosges, Paris, France
  11. 11. UrbanSquare Closed Square: • Each façade fulfills a dual function • On the one hand, it is part of an individual structure; on the other hand, it forms part of a common urban spatial order • Continuity and context of the framing structures were achieved by the Colonnade, arched arcades • Yet, the inner courtyard with in a complex monumental structure is not a square from the town planning view
  12. 12. UrbanSquare Closed Square: Colonnade in Agora - Priene Arcade in Place des Vosges
  13. 13. UrbanSquare The Dominated Square: • Characterized by one individual structure or a group of buildings towards which the open space is directed • Surrounding structures are related to them • Dominated building may be a church, a palace, a town hall, an architecturally developed fountain, a theatre • Usually the direction of a main street which opens into the square establishes the axis towards the dominant building
  14. 14. UrbanSquare The Dominated Square: Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris St. Peter’s, Rome Place de l’Odeon, Paris
  15. 15. UrbanSquare The Dominated Square: • Compels the spectator to move toward and to look at the focal architecture • Dominant square produces a directive of motion • The dominated structure need not necessarily be voluminous • Very often it is merely a gate or an arch which may dominate a whole square • A fountain may also dominate a square it if constitutes an entire front in with architecture, sculpture and water
  16. 16. UrbanSquare The Dominated Square: Piazza del Popolo, Rome Fountain dominating the Square, Fontana di Trevi, Rome Pariser Platz, Berlin Squares subordinate to the Street –gate axis
  17. 17. UrbanSquare The Dominated Square: Dominating element may also be a Void Maria Theresien strasse, Innsbruck Dominating element is a broad river Praca do Comercio, Lisbon Subordinating Square to the continuous axis Piazza Vittorio Veneto, Turin
  18. 18. UrbanSquare The Nuclear Square: • Nuclear Square consists of a nucleus, a strong vertical accent – a monument, a fountain, an obelisk • It is powerful enough to charge the space around with a tension that the impression of the square will be evoked • It will tie the heterogeneous elements of the periphery into one visual unit • Dimensions of nuclear square are restricted as the visual effect of the central monument is naturally limited
  19. 19. UrbanSquare The Nuclear Square: Donatello’s equestrian figure Piazza del Santo in Padua, Italy Nelson’s column Trafalgar square, London
  20. 20. UrbanSquare Grouped Squares: • In Grouped Squares, Individual squares may be fused organically and aesthetically into one comprehensive whole • Each unit - the individual square, represents an entity, aesthetically self sufficient and yet part of a comprehensive higher order • A sequence of squares, different in size and form, develops in only one direction, thus establishing a straight axis
  21. 21. UrbanSquare The Grouped Square: Sequence of Squares developed in a straight axis Imperial Fora, Rome
  22. 22. UrbanSquare Grouped Squares: • Or, in a non-axial organization, a smaller square opens with one of its sides upon a larger square, so that the individual axes of each square meet in a right angle • Or, a group of three or more squares of different shapes and proportions surround one dominant building • Or, two individual squares fall into a coherent pattern although they are separated from each other by blocks of houses, thoroughfares
  23. 23. UrbanSquare The Grouped Square: Non-axial organization of Squares Piazza and Piazzetta in Venice
  24. 24. UrbanSquare The Grouped Square: Squares around one Dominant building Palazzo Podesta in Bologna, Italy
  25. 25. UrbanSquare The Grouped Square: Two seperated squares with coherence Piazza d’Erbe and Piazza dei Signori
  26. 26. UrbanSquare The Amorphous Square: • Amorphous is formless, unorganized, having no specific shape • It does not represent aesthetic qualities or artistic possibilities • However, if it shares some elements with the previously analyzed squares it may appear like one of them • New York’s Washington square is not a closed square. Its dimensions are so large
  27. 27. UrbanSquare The Amorphous Square: • Proportions of many of its surrounding structures are so heterogeneous, so irregular, even contradictory • Location and size of the small triumph arch are so dissimilar to all the other given factors • Unified impression cannot result • Disproportion in scale destroys all aesthetic possibilities New York’s Washington Square
  28. 28. UrbanSquare The Amorphous Square: • Place de l’Opera in Paris could not become a “dominated” Square in spite of the monumental façade of the imposing opera house • Width of the Boulevard des Cupucines is running through its off centre • Presence of small structures like the entrance to the Metro, scattered all over the area ruin any special effect • These examples are “squares” from surveyor’s viewpoint, although without any artistic impact
  29. 29. UrbanSquare The Amorphous Square: Boulevard and Metro ruin Dominated Square Place de l’Opera in Paris
  30. 30. UrbanSquare Thank You References: The Square in space and time, Paul Zucker, Time-Saver Standards for Urban Design