Showing posts with label Article. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Article. Show all posts

Monday, 16 April 2012

Patchwork City / City of Limits

Alberto (Al Azar) Martinez GarcĂ­a is a student at the Escuela Tecnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid in Spain, and a reporter for Plataforma Arquitectura. He visited Belfast in February 2012 - here he gives his impressions of the city as an urbanist and a visitor.

Patchwork city - image by Alberto Al Azar.

Belfast does not appear uniform. It is broken, interrupted, inducing different urban situations, full of spatial content - marked by the routes one can make around the city. Its history impacted on its citizens. Its citizens formed its architecture which in turn created heterogeneous urban landscapes - and which eventually became an urban mosaic, a patchwork city interrupted by its boundaries.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

"We un-built the city"

Above: Image of Berry Street by Michael Comiskey on Flickr

From yesterday's Irish Times, Fionola Meredith talks to Mark Hackett and Declan Hill about the work of the Forum for Alternative Belfast.

Irish Times: Another Belfast is imagined (13/03/2010)

You can pick up a copy of The Missing City map for free at PLACE.

Read more:
Forum for Alternative Belfast
PLACE: Happy to Live Here?
Slugger O'Toole: May the Lord in his mercy be kind to Belfast

Meanwhile, Alan in Belfast talks to Niall McCullough, whose work is part of the Lives of Spaces at OBG: "McCullough pointed out that it was unusual for him as an architect to return to a building once it was in use. By having to sit in the library to think about the project, he’d discovered and come to terms with elements of his design that had worked, and elements that had been less successful".

Monday, 18 May 2009

"Constructive Conservation"

Park Hill Estate, Sheffield - image source

English Heritage is an excellent 4-part BBC series following the work of English Heritage in preserving four major heritage sites in England: the Jacobean mansion Apethorpe Hall; the Park Hill Estate housing scheme, Sheffield, dating from 1961; the 16th Century garden at Kenilworth Castle; and King's Cross railway station in London.

The show captures fairly well the pressures faced on all sides: English Heritage have to balance improvement of the sites in their charge with the retention of the original features and character, architects and conservation engineers have to work within fairly strict conservation boundaries while allowing their own creativity and conceptions of each project to flourish, and of course all the projects now face the daunting challenge of the global recession.

And of course, any plans to modernise existing buildings will run into controversy - writing in the Guardian, Owen Hatherly is not sure English Heritage have gotten it right with their work on Park Hill:

"This astonishing structure is a battered remnant of a very different country, one that briefly turned housing for working people into futuristic monuments rather than shamefaced hutches. The ideologies of regeneration and heritage, when applied to the very different ethics of new brutalism, can only destroy the thing they claim to love."

The four episodes of English Heritage are available on the BBC's iPlayer until Friday 22nd May. Well worth a look: click here.

There is also a profile of each project on the English Heritage site: click here.)

BBC iPlayer: English Heritage (4 episodes)
English Heritage: English Heritage at Work
English Heritage: Park Hill - Constructive Conservation in Practice
The Guardian: Park Hill "in danger of losing what makes it special" (Owen Hatherly, 2nd May 2009)

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

"The budget and the sky really are the limit"

Stuart Jeffries in the Guardian investigates the current worldwide fashion for installing ferris wheels in "status-conscious" cities.

The age of the wheel (The Guardian, 18/02/09)