Monday, January 19, 2009

For a more human city

Today I read in a document from CERTU (Centre d'Etudes sur les Réseaux, les Transports, l'Urbanisme et les constructions publiques) the following sentence:

"Public spaces design has for a long time been restricted to a primarily functional approach: travel and parking have been given preferential treatment to the detriment of local life and the urban environment."

To plan cities starting from a automobilistic logic sounds quite illogical to me. Such planning position - unfortunately still blindly followed in São Paulo until these days - close all the doors to a more human city, in which the man is the protagonist, and not the machine.

It is a great irony to look at the city and see that the car is the king, and not the human being. The "nurturing" city is where I feel free to meet people, to move, to get inspiration from the experiences I live and unfold my creativity.

- - -

Hundertwasser said: "Architecture should elevate the man, not humiliate, oppress and enslave him. Architecture should offer something to human beings. We must feel secure and at home in there. Architecture must have the potential to be like a third skin.'

I bet he was referring to the public realm as well.

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