Cycles in Urban Environments: Investigating Temporal Rhythms - preview
Book available on amazon Published on: 2010-05-04 Original language: English Binding: Paperback 180 pages This book explores the appearance and impact of cycles in urban surroundings and, in a second stage, their potential for an urban proposition. Examples can be found in time, economics, environment or social activities. Cycles appear through a wide range of scales and often without referring to them. Investigating these patterns in a spatio-social context makes sense regarding urban planning and urban sustainability as well as from a theoretical point of view in the sense of a spatial-temporal concept. The first part, is designed as an observational study in an existing urban environment, the second part, is an application of some of the findings to a proposal for a floating city in the Thames Estuary.
OU RS H spring winter SEASONS autumn MIN U TE S installations 10J guaranty fassade 25J refurbishment strukture SE N CO DS prototype us user product production ta task idea d distribution recycling use summer repair identify classify remove quantify avoid reduce RISK respond tranfer hold share outcome CYCLES in Urban Environments CYCLES in Urban Environments Investigating Temporal Rhythms Fabian Neuhaus Dedicated to Malik Preface This book is based on the Masters Thesis I wrote for my MSc in Urban Design at the Bartett School of Architecture at UCL. For this work I was awarded a Distinction. It is now transformed into summarizes investiagtions into book and temporal Acknowledgement I would like to thank all these different people who supported my work on this report and throughout the year here in London. First of all I would like to thank my family, Malik and Sandra who took some part in the research work and supported me always with whatever they could. Special thanks go to my tutor Olaf Kneer, for his support, all his superb inputs, critical questions, and in general for his good mood and positive nature, not only but particularly during the work on this report. I would also like to thank my classmates Jeff Ho, Luis Suarez, Thiresh Govender and others, for their inputs and critical remarks about the work during the development of this report but also throughout the whole year. Thanks go also to Anika Mittal and Juergen Haepp with whom I developed the AKA project that became the testing environment for the second part of this report. All the basic ideas in connection with AKA and some of cAKA are developed by the three of us together. Special thanks also go to my professor Colin Fournier certainly for his inputs, but also for his invitation to take part in this course and especially for his offer and encouragement to stay on the course and finish my Masters here at the Bartlett School of Architecture in London. This year of studies in London was only possible with the financial support of the Stiftung fur Architektur Geisendorf. fan, September 2006 urban phenomenon as well as a section were initial findings are translated and used to extend on a proposal of a floating city located in the Thames Estuary in the UK. The publication also incudes in the addendum a number of essays written in the context of this investigations. fan, April 2010 11 Abstract This book explores the appearance and impact of cycles in urban surroundings and, in a second stage, their potential for an urban proposition. Cycles appear in any part of life. Examples can be found in time, economics, environment ... and they can be seasons, days, technology, events, life cycles, but also particular happenings like rush hour or basic needs such as eating and sleeping. Cycles appear through a wide range of scales and often without referring to them. They appear out of subsystems evolving over time and generations. The peculiarity of cycles is the fact that they are closed systems in terms of their repetition. Each cycle repeats itself along its script. This applies a particular rhythm to urban life. But as they are not synchronized they interfere/overlap with/sit on top of/disturb/... one another. This can be a source of movement and action in urban life. A very abstract picture for this could be a clock mechanism - of course, here all the different wheels are working closely together for one goal - but maybe cycles in a system are doing this too, just in a different sense, in the sense that the urban system adapts to it. The first part of the report is about research work carried out during the month of July 2006. I observed my personal interaction with the city in terms of different cycles in order to explore different types and their impact. The second part translates different conclusions from the research work onto a proposal based in the Thames Estuary. This work builds up on the AKA project developed by Anika Mittal, Word count 16,600 Keywords Cycle, Cycles, Rhythm, System, Urban system, Arkway [AKA], Thames Estuary, Clockbank, Juergen Haepp and myself earlier during the Urban Design Course at the Bartlett School of Architecture. The previous AKA project is taken as a base to test the potential of cycles for a new proposal named as cAKA. The new proposal builds on the ideas of a floating city in the Thames Estuary as a new development for the growth of London in the Thames Gateway. It is not the aim of the cAKA proposal to answer all the remaining questions on the earlier project, but to densify certain aspects of cycles within the environment of a proposal. The research work therefore acts as a source of many new aspects to be looked at in this very special environment of an urban development on water. 12 13 Contents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c On Cycles Changes and recurrence are the sense of being alive - things gone by, death to come, and present awareness. The world around us, so much of it our own creation, shifts continually and often bewilders us. We reach out to that world to preserve or to change it, and so to make visible our desire. The arguments of planning all come down to the management of change [Kevin Lynch, What Time is this Place, p 01]. This short research work aims to explore the impact of different cycles on the urban environment of a city. The more I try to search for cycles in my surrounding, the more I see all actions going in cyclical operations. It seems to me as if the city life is kind of programmed along these patterns of repeated actions in daily routines. Due to their repetitive pattern it can be easily compared with a computer program that just repeats its commands along a defined string of codes. But for me, cycles in real life seem to be more flexible, more adaptive and more playful. The first picture I had in mind of cycles in the city was the mechanical clockwork like the ones used in analogue watches. But the further I developed this research and later transformed it into the project, I realize how deeply the cycles are connected to actual urban life. And this life is probably the essential element of the city, the one thing that makes any environment lovely, enjoyable and familiar. In one of my earlier essays in this course, I wrote on system theory. I thought of the city as a system in relation to the system theory that evolved from Bertanalffy`s work on natural systems [Bertanalffy, 1968]. I looked at this theory of systems and subsystems and how they are constituted out of elements, how they define their dynamic borders through relationships between themselves. "The whole is more than the sum of its parts" [Aristotle, in the Metaphysics]. I can imagine cycles to be an element in this picture of a system. It could be the element that brings in a third aspect, the aspect of movement. This can be all different kinds of movement pedestrian movement or material flows; or on an abstract level just the representation of life and time. Besides movement, the cycles introduce a tool of constant feedback inputs through repetition. On this basis the system can take decisions and deal with changing environments and different impacts. This brought about a second picture of how to look at the city. I would like to introduce the origin of the idea of looking at cycles. The AKA project of a floating city in the Thames Estuary, developed in a group with Anika Mittal, Juergen Haepp and myself earlier in this course, talked about a lot of different things like reconfiguration, process and self organisation. But the main topic from the beginning was mobility and movement. We had the picture of total mobility that would 17 40 surprisingly a lot of car brands advertise their new models. Alongside this came the images of the new Disney-Pixar animation movie Cars, that will be on display soon. Each of these themes applied a specific message and atmosphere to the urban environment and most of us got the information. Taking a broader view, the changing rhythms of advertising displays - tied to the rhythms of product innovation - creates a consonance and interesting dialogue with other city rhythms such as cycles of urban regeneration and decay [Anne Cronin, Urban Advertising: a Machine for Thinking?, Urban Design, winter 2006, issue 97, p.10-11]. But what was more interesting for me about these examples is the way the city surface is changing and I was able to observe this change of material cycles on this example. If cities are continually made and remade, advertising must be understood as one of those elements that constitute the urban [Anne Cronin, Urban Advertising: a Machine for Thinking?, Urban Design, winter 2006, issue 97, p.10-11]. 41 58 PART TWO - cAKA With this background of research work on cycles through my observations in the city of London I go back to the AKA project and apply certain new aspects. It is on the one hand a tool to develop a project; but, on the other hand, it is also kind of a test run to see what certain aspects of cycles as described before really mean in a urban environment and whether the interpretation is useful. 59 76 77 86 Supply Unit - the Weekly Cycle Every unit has a self sufficiency of something between one and two weeks. This means they can store goods, fresh water, energy and waste. The need to empty and refill can be served on different locations. Ashore there are fixed stations similar to gas stations,and in the structure there are supply units that do this job. This crawler applies a cycle on a weekly scale to the single units in the structure. The supply unit picks up rubbish and waste water, but it also supplies units with fresh water and energy in different forms. It travels along and sometimes through the structure from unit to unit and reaches out with its flexible arms to attach to them and exchange goods. The tentacles are used to pump waste and water. As the structure keeps changing the Crawler adapts to these changes as part of the structure. It doesn't have a fixed route, but the Crawler has a certain speed so that one can calculate its arrival approximately. But the units can change their location according to the Crawler's path in order to get supply. To ask for supply one can put a request on the area's intranet and the Crawler automatically generates a new path. There is no need to be at home, supply will be done automatically. 87 96 Connections to land are good and the exchange functions in both directions, through the existing pier of Southend on the east side. On the west side, there is a fairly strong connection to Canvey Island. This connection is affected by the tide and only operates during high tide. The sandbank appearing during low tide attracts lots of people from these existing settlements to come out to Clock Bank. The flow of people goes with the movement of the tide. Interconnections between the AKA areas is very strong. Clock Bank and Nore an especially well connected due to their central location. There is exchange of people as the two complement in usage terms. Nore is more business orientated; Clock Bank is more focused on retail. Usage The character is mainly dominated by a mixture of shopping, entertainment and culture. It is comparable to Soho in central London. Narrow streets, small hip shops, nightlife, and a special ambience is achieved by having different cultural groups inhabiting zones. The part time open space is a very important part of the Clock Bank identity. It brings in some leisure activities. Cycles On a yearly scale the natural seasons affect the structure in terms of number of inhabitants. During winter there are far fewer people actually living here and therefore housing is exchanged by larger structures. During summer the housing units move back in and larger structures are pushed out. The economical cycle of the retail business affects >Clock Bank comparison - central London, Soho [upside down], showing Hyde Park, Oxford Street and the British Museum. 97 116 117 134 >This page: CBcanveypoint with activities and landscape contours of the tidal area. >>Next page: CBcanveypoint on two different days with each two conditions of tide impact. 135 136 Day-time activ Night-time act 137 ities ivities 142 Bibliography Life Cycle Assessment. Available at: http:// gdrc.org/uem/lca/lca-define.html September 7, 2006]. Crinson, M. ed., 2005. Urban Memory: History Wikipedia. Available at: http://www.wikipedia. org/ [Accessed September 7, 2006]. Andreotti, L. & Costa, X. eds., 1996. Theory of the D�rive and Other Situationist Writings on the City, Barcelona: Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona. Appleyard, D., Lynch, K. & Myer, J.R., 1964. The View from the Road, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press for the Joint Center for Urban Studies of M.I.T. and Harvard University. Hall, P.G., 2000. Urban Future 21: A Global Buckley, W., 1967. Sociology and Modern Systems Theory, London: Prentice Hall. Calle, S., 2004. Exquisite Pain, London: Thames & Hudson. Calle, S., 1988. Suite V�nitienne, Seattle: Bay Press. Calle, S. & Centre, G.P., 2004. Sophie Calle: M'as-Tu Vue, Munich: Prestel. Chapin, F.S., 1974. Human Activity Patterns in the City: Things People Do in Time and in Space, New York: Wiley-Interscience. Coffield, F. & Funda��o, C.G., 1991. Vandalism & Graffiti: The State of the Art, London: Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. Kelly, K., 1995. Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, & the Economic World, Basic Books. Lim, C.J., 2002a. Realms of Impossibility, London: Wiley-Academy. Hoverstadt, L., 2006. Strategien zur Ueberwindung des Rasters. Archithese. Agenda for Twenty-First Century Cities, London: Spon Press. Hebbert, M., 1998. London: More by Fortune Than Design, Chichester: John Wiley. Hillier, B. & Hanson, J., 1984. The Social Logic of Space, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Durrer, R., 2006. An den Grenzen der Standardisierung. Archithese, 34-39. Du Gay, P., Redman, P. & Evans, J. eds., 2000. Identity: A Reader, London: SAGE. and Amnesia in the Modern City, London: Routledge. Cronin, A., 2006. Urban Advertising : a Machine for Thinking? Urban Design. [Accessed Coverley, M., 2006. Psychogeography, Harpenden: Pocket Essentials. 143 Lim, C.J., 2002b. Realms of Impossibility, London: Wiley-Academy. Lim, C.J., 2002c. Realms of Impossibility, London: Wiley-Academy. Lynch, K., 1960. The Image of the City, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Lynch, K., 1972. What Time Is This Place?, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Mitchell, W.J., 1999. E-Topia: "urban Life, Jim - but Not as We Know It", Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Mittal, A., Haepp, J. & Neuhaus, F., 2006. AKA the Book, MSc Urban Design, The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. Mittal, A., Haepp, J. & Neuhaus, F., ArKwAy the floating city. ArKwAy. Available at: http:// jafud.com/aka_welcome.html September 7, 2006]. Sassen, S., 1996. Metropolen des Weltmarkts. Die neue Rolle der Global Cities., Campus Fachbuch. Sennett, R., 1971. The Uses of Disorder: Personal Identity and City Life, London: Allen Lane The Penguin Press. [Accessed Tajbakhsh, K., 2001. The Promise of the City: Space, Identity, and Politics in Contemporary Social Thought, Berkeley: University of California Press. 144 ADDENDUM