COLOANE St. Francis Xavier Church ARCHITECTS Rui Leão and Carlota Bruni
The specialist points to the square surrounding St. Francis Xavier Church in Coloane Village which has green areas, a fountain, and some benches. “There should be ten times more places like these because a city like Macao needs zones of encounter.” Quadros concurs, adding that these public spaces should be without barriers. “Taipa Park, for example, is a public complex with several infrastructures, but it is surrounded by a huge steel railing which gives the idea of enclosure.” According to local architect Carlos Marreiros, the existence of large public squares is one of the most profound identity traits of the Chinese metropolis. In the case of Macao, the city needs only provide the space. “People will do the rest.” Thus far, the region’s typology has supported his thesis. Marreiros cites Senado Square as a good example, with commercial spaces occupying ground floor units and residential units above. This identity trait of the large public space, the architect argues, NOVEMBER 2016
should harness Landry’s theory regarding urban connection. “Macao had this connection [between people and places] once, but not anymore. I agree we should recover this sense of relationship; one could accomplish this with the pedestrianisation of some streets, for example.” The same goes for the Cotai Strip area, according to Landry: “The difference between a street and a strip is huge and [Cotai Strip] could be pedestrian‑friendly.” The key, Landry argues, is creating a balance between different environments and mind ‑sets rather than having them coexist in separate vacuums. This is one of the fundamental differences between ‘The City 2.0’ and ‘The City 3.0’. In both models, technology and enterprise hubs may comprise, for example, a garden, a pool and an alfresco shopping centre. But city 2.0 is more tech‑driven, keeping innovation campuses away from the city centre, whereas 3.0 mixes them all together, providing a sense of closeness and belonging.