The purpose of this paper is to propose PlaceMaker as a method of urban analysis and design which both detects elements that do not feature in traditional mapping and which constitute the contemporary identity of the places, and identifies appropriate project interventions. In order to illustrate the method's potential, the final results of experimentation carried out in the Ramblas in Barcelona are presented.
The proposed method gathers, processes and reconstructs the data deriving from nominal, perceptual, graphic, photographic and video surveys, and compares these data with those provided by an analysis of expectations, an analysis of traditional cartography and two questionnaires administered to local inhabitants. The information collected during the phases of analysis constitutes the basis for constructing guidelines for sustainable design and planning. Two final complex maps – the first of analysis and the second of design – respectively, represent the identity of places and project interventions.
The design orientations took into account liveability, place identity, safety of this place and user preferences in order to mitigate the impact of globalization and achieve sustainable urban development. The experiment shows that the urban identity emerging in the analysis phases is not entirely sustainable: many factors are contributing to transforming it not only through changes in places, but also in habits and perceptions of the huge flow of people who use the Ramblas. The actions proposed are thus designed to enhance the identity of places, albeit not crystallizing it.
PlaceMaker is an original method which is intended for use as a support tool in integrated sustainable project design targeting place identity and as a tool for dynamic and complex place knowledge. The main potential beneficiaries are administrators, urban planners and designers and, in simplified form, citizens, tourists and place users.
Sepe, M. (2010), "Liveability, quality and place identity in the contemporary city: How to monitor and mitigate the impact of globalization on urban spaces", Journal of Place Management and Development, Vol. 3 No. 3, pp. 221-246. https://doi.org/10.1108/17538331011083952Download as .RIS
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