Siamak Vahdani , pp. 95. DSN/School of Planning and Media Design, 2012.
The problem of a rapidly growing population and demand to move to urban areas was only one of the reasons that caused the cities’ expansions. Beside this, in pursuit of a better life, many families found their future life in outer city edges which ends in suburban patterns. This confronted some un-intended consequences like dispersing population over suburban areas, climate changes, environmental issues, public and personal health, etc. The problems still exist and it is expecting to continue more in the next 50 years. The issues are calling for reconsiderations of the situation.
Looking back to the cities’ growth after the World War II, and the experience of “Urban Sprawl” phenomenon, makes it crucial to change the trend and study more on placemaking and better adaptive human environment, which was neglected at those years. The raise of new movements in urban designing was a respond to this miss-allocation of energy and human recourses. It was the time when movements of architects, urban designers, thinker and experts began to set out a number of principles for “placemaking” and better environments for human places. They are continuing to study and consult with the developers and prevent the opportunists, in order to not experience the same mistake as before.
New Urbanism is one of those movements which established its principles in order to increase its highly dense development of both the inner city’s abandoned lands and the outer suburban areas. Today, New Urbanism put their priority on supporting the development of current resources in urban areas instead. Its principles have become increasingly influential in the fields of planning, architecture, and public policy.
In Poland, Warsaw is also suffering from losing its population since suburban towns and municipalities have become competitor for growth rather than partners for the Capital City. In order to stop more dispersing population in suburban areas and reverse this trend back, new development plan has marked large amount of vacant land. The city economy has been growing rapidly for several years now, especially in the service sector; therefore shrinking manufacturing output of the city has left the city dotted with numerous degraded or obsolete industrial sites. According to new development plan, new strategies are going to implement on infrastructure investments on obsolete lands within the city’s districts.
After the de-industrialization in Poland – like many Eastern European countries- many old industrial parks was left abounded or underperformed. These lands are providing a great opportunity for creating new dense residential neighborhoods and communities to bring back those left population. The potential locations and existing infrastructures in industrial lands would make the project profitable for developers. For example one of Warsaw’s development plans is to transforming former industrial and railway sites within the city, into dense residential are, thus locating residents closer their places of work.
“Szamoty” is an old underperforming industrial land, on west Warsaw’s agglomeration border close to suburban towns. According to upper-hand development plans, a new dense mix-used residential area is going to be built in Szamoty site. This thesis has chosen “Szamoty” for implementation of New Urbanism “Placemaking” principles in a new residential area. It is an opportunity to correct the mistakes of the past, and also prevent those for new developments, since we today are smarter in facing the problem of growth and since we better can estimate the future demands.
The aim of this project is to find spatial solution for problems of Szamoty, and do the placemaking by implementing urban design ingredients such as buildings’ forms, open public spaces and street into new spatial design proposal. The evaluation will show to some extend the proposal has respond to the stated problems. In the end, then project will be concluded and new questions will be raised.
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