Urban space projects are more than a final layout. They evolve different stages and actors, from needs definition, activities mix goals to be met, to design, following construction and space use along a time-life cycle where changes occur. How are values and services assured in project’s life and how do they relate to stakeholders’ intentions, needs and resources in PS? Therefore, to structure interaction between all actors, we have to identify and share common concepts of public needs, public service, public interest, public resources… in the context of systems service criteria.
The output practical question is: how to diagnose and identify systemic problems of public space, and develop their service potential, as the need for new PS, how to improve their use, diversity or quality, or to reestablish its continuity?
Evaluation methods in urban design practices must include relations between public space system and other urban spatial systems – landscape, infra-structures and other dimensions – in operative interdisciplinary knowledge of a changing urban context where isolated perspectives and tools are now insufficient. This is the problem to address.
The central innovation of this project is to go beyond present PS evaluation practices and adapt PS potential to emerging urban conditions. The need for new tools derives from emerging types of PS’s (enlarging the scope of PS systems notion on bigger scale metropolitan areas), and value concepts of PS, as a continuity collective service system in the process of structuring needs.
What is the overall objective of the project?
1: To develop the concepts of “system” and “service” as standard integrators of diversity and compatibility of PS common or collective uses.
2: To promote the connections of public space with other urban systems regarding its characteristics and potential, to expand optimization and adaptability options (compatible mobility, social and environmental cohesion, attractiveness, identification and co’ownership).
3: To support articulation strategies (systems and components) in public space lifecycle, with a cost and benefit rational, that includes a multi-dimensional perspective (morphologic, aesthetic, functional, infrastructural, technologic, social, economic, symbolic and cultural).
Research’s strategy and methodology will address public space production process, their uses and values in different times, including stakeholders and user’s perspectives. The complexity of PS, as an adaptive system imposes the use of disciplinary interaction. Output project products are directed at professionals and institutional players and public space users. Project’s impact results from construction, demonstration and dissemination of concepts and tools, with systemic service references of social, economic and environmental viability.