Urban Design Vocabulary
Urban Design Vocabulary for students of urban design and Architecture Copyright material Property of School of Plannin...
URBAN MORPHOLOGY! MUMBAI!
MORPHOLOGY refers to the physical form, structure and the constituent elements of an urban area, along with those processes which are instrumental in determining that form. ! ! Morphology is derived from “morphos” meaning form and “logos” meaning study.! ! It is the study of the form of human settlements and the process of their formation and transformation. The study seeks to understand the spatial structure and character of a metropolitan area, city, town or village by examining the patterns of its component parts and the process of its development. This can involve the analysis of physical structures at different scales as well as patterns of movement, land use, ownership or control and occupation. Typically, analysis of physical form focuses on street pattern, plot pattern and building pattern, sometimes referred to collectively as urban grain.!
URBAN FORM! URBAN FORM is the collective three-dimensional expression of an urban area as represented by the elements of built and open spaces and their relationship to each other. The term 'built' would refer to buildings, city walls, vertical towers, etc. while 'open spaces' would include streets, courtyards, roads, parks, tot-lots, river beds, etc. Size, shape, grain and texture of an area are some of the characteristics that determine the nature of urban form.! !
URBAN STRUCTURE! DELHI! URBAN STRUCTURE is the underlying basic skeletal system around which the different parts of an urban area are bonded together. This system comprises of physical, functional, social and perceptional components, which are instrumental in determining the nature or character of the area.! !
URBAN TISSUE! CHICAGO! URBAN TISSUE is the smallest identifiable segment of an urban area possessing and exhibiting functional homogeneity and cohesive built form.!
Squares within consolidated urban tissue. Image: Mario Gallarati!
URBAN FABRIC! WASHINGTON!
URBAN FABRIC refers to the manner in which urban tissues, uniform or diverse in nature are knitted together with the urban structure to form an entity. !
URBAN FABRIC! DELHI!
SIZE OF CITY! SIZE of a city is defined by the population and the physical extent of a city. !
SHAPE OF CITY! AUROVILLE! SHAPE of the city is the physical outline in horizontal plan form and vertical profile or contour.!
SHAPE OF CITY!
PATTERN! PATTERN is the underlying geometry of city form. ! Pattern qualifies size and shape of a city. !
GRAIN & TEXTURE! FINE GRAIN EVEN TEXTURE !
GRAIN is the degree of fineness or coarseness in an urban area. ! ! In physical terms, grain can be understood by the bulk of the built forms that constitute an urban area. For instance, residential areas are usually of fine grain and civic buildings are largely defined as coarse grain. ! ! ! TEXTURE is the degree of mixture of fine and coarse elements. It is qualified as being either uniform or uneven.
COARSE GRAIN EVEN TEXTURE !
COARSE GRAIN UNEVEN TEXTURE !
DENSITY! BERGEN, NORWAY – 538/sqkm!
MUMBAI – 30,000/sqkm!
DENSITY is the ratio of persons, households, or volume of building or development to a unit of land area. ! ! Density is defined in both quantitative and qualitative ways. Mathematically, it is computed by the number of persons (population)/ unit area of any urban area, city and region. ! Its qualitative dimensions however are manifold, having a direct implication on the urban form and therefore a crucial determinant of the quality of urban environment in an area.! Unless a city is evenly built – up, studies of density are best made on separate sectors of a city. Density figures indicate the relationship between built-up and open land: therefore they can describe almost graphically the image of the distinct parts of the city, be it a suburban residential precinct, or a historic core/ center of the city. Also, densities have definite implications for various forms of transportation. ! In conducting a visual survey, it is useful to determine the density of various areas and to relate the density figures to physical patterns of land and buildings and hence, the visual form of the area.! ! POPULATION DENSITY is the number of persons per square mile or square kilometer in a country, or state, or region. !
TYPOLOGY! TYPOLOGY is the study and classification of buildings and urban spaces according to some common characteristic: plan configuration, use, form, material, style, location, meaning, idea and so on.!