Vertical Vs Horizontal Living another direction?

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Vertical Vs Horizontal Living another direction?

Postby giventofly » Wed Feb 15, 2006 7:10 pm

I am doing research into the future concepts of Vertical and horizontal cities. I understand that Manhattan and Tokyo could be taken as the proto vertical cities and paris and rome could be the proto horizontal cities but all these systems ares so inherantly flawed socially emotionally and physically that surely another solution to mass high density inhabitation must be in existance surely apart from the total return to a agri/green city(like that of broad acre) there must be a more humanistic social and architectural solution..... to take us into the 22nd centuary its a big ask but
(after that mouthfull)
any ideas?
:roll: [/b]
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Postby mx2 » Wed Feb 15, 2006 7:42 pm

It's an interesting topic because I think there's a fine line between architecture as a prescriptive measure to social engineering and architecture as a reflection of our culture (through time :) )...contrary to what is being touted as architectural failures, I think most of the built world was not created as architecture or even architects. Even City Planners, as a government employee who graduated from college, may findd himself simply regurgitating old systems of ideas as dictated by budget and his old boss. Ho many architects actually had the opportunity to design a city from scratch and see it realized. I only know of one in Argentina...a better result than his (LeCorb) India experiment, and was truly a great way to show how differently architects approach planning than say a professional "planner". But I wouldn't conclude horizontality or verticality is the cause of our social woes. In fact I'm not sure what other direction (pun) society can take? Angles and curves are already here and I don't see any more or less decadence. Architecture can help, sure, but we can't rely on architecture alone. For one, not everyone recognizes the difference since they're so caught up in their own world. Comments?

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Postby lekizz » Wed Feb 15, 2006 8:12 pm

German landscape architect Herman Barges advocated that we treat cities as landscapes and appropriately vegetate the 'mountains'/permeate the 'valleys'. Cities IMO have already become environmental disasters, whether living in dense high-rise or urban sprawl. There are many practical solutions in practise, environmental and social, but I suspect you are searching for a theoretical exploration rather than a lekizz step-by-step programme for saving the planet :)
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Postby vikrant » Wed Feb 15, 2006 8:24 pm

Hi..
To speak about verticality, you must have heard about the "Bionic Tower" which is proposed in Shanghai... Cervera&Pioz Is the architectural firm involved in this project... Its futuristic approach suggests a vertical city, having all the requirements of a city.
Its basically designed offshore and hence a better way to approach due to decreasing land reserves.

I might be able to provide you with a better insight about this tower, if would like to stress on it...
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Postby solidred » Wed Feb 15, 2006 9:39 pm

Ah. 01:25am. Propose a new city concept before bed. A nice little challenge.
Not vertical, not horizontal...hmm

...You know, such is my ego, I generally assume that if I can't answer a question I assume it must be an erroneous question?

>puffs on cigarillo to see if that will help<

Thing is, I rather like cities as they are.

There's work been done on the politics of zoning. There's probably work to be done on the economics of phasing. Diagrammatic segregation of elements (vehicles and pedestrians) has generally been disasterous. Visual conceits generally crumble under the contingencies of the first two concepts. LA is pretty much Broadacre gone sour. Put a pond in the middle of a city and you get Geneva. Douse the whole place in water and you get Venice. Make a ring of important buildings: Vienna. Split one into halves and you get Edinburgh or Budapest.

I'll sleep on it...
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Postby mx2 » Thu Feb 16, 2006 12:53 pm

Sure the integration of landscape (also a LeCorbu principle) as the primary cohesive element of sustainable cities is a great idea and has been introduced into many zoning laws worldwide I think, but I tend to agree that cities are not all that bad. I think susburbia is a far worse anti-social experiment gone awry, but even there some elements have merit.

That said, as density increases in ceratin cities, vertical architecture is taking on these challenges. I revere the Metabolist idealists, ie Kenzo Tange and his prodige, Isozaki. I remember one building (bad with remember the names...forgive me) of Tange's that incorporates multiple "parks in the sky"...a sort of vertical village with various destinations and spaces. It rather embraces the verticality rather than try to rationalize everything in plan. It's a way of changing our perspectives and adding to the broad discussion of architecture. I tried to do this in my thesis design, in fact by skewing suburbia into vertical architecture. In many ways, the ironies and contradictions begin to show its ugly head...but the synthesis of human ideas and needs become isolated and enhanced...if identified correctly. I would love more input by architects, instead of developers that always scoff at the return of investment. At what point does investment in society become valuable? I suppose only if it's high-end fashion chic? Then get the interior designers and fashion models to pose in front of it...hahaha...

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Postby giventofly » Mon Feb 20, 2006 7:54 pm

i guess what confuses me about A the study of such a topic and B the results of my research is that we love cities because they are a mix of people ideas systems seemingly random and yet working as a whole the same way the human body works in many ways and yet at the same time we can't admit that that is a exactly what a city is. A mass of interconnecting lines/systems/ equations.
Much the same way one could argue emotions and instincts those things that make us human are actually complex systems of hormones and other bodily chemicles that enable the emotions to exist.
Investigated the Penopticon and the frightening pyschological implications of such a project. It is infact the complete opposite its is not engineering/desiging happyness but more ensuring the design does not instill fear isloation and unhappyness......a la concrete predestrian 1 st floor cities(regrateably corbusian in origin) like the Olympiades in Paris or Bobigny or Evry or any other suburban/urban mass housing scheme in France
More - forum abuse - anyone?
- forum abuse - city perhaps?
true suburbia is generating a huge problem but as a result the notions of urbanisation becomes more important as seen in the decentraliston of Paris(apologies am currently based here and alll my work is done there hence the refs) and the loss of identity and the vacuus feeling generated by such moves. Here is a largly traditionally horizontal centralised city on the verge of implosion. So if anything the question of the evolution of cities is integral to the expansion into surbia and its absorbtion and developement as both a contrast and compliment to the urban environment.
How can we sustainibly develope a city that is both expanding vertically and horizontally and can there be another option?
norman foster has designed indoor parks into the comerce bank (see below image) i know the kenzo tange project for Tokyo bay very interesting along with Plan Voisin et al and any others?...
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Postby mx2 » Tue Feb 21, 2006 1:04 am

Let me break it down for you in simpler terms then: first, simplify your question...your quest. What is it about a city exactly that you really want to know? Your original question was, and I quote: "any ideas?"

Ideas? Answers? What about cities?...ask questions.

Secondly, why are you looking at such a large scope? To try and analyze one small building could fill a book ten times over with detailed thesis, conjecture or simple muse but it would be full. Now imagine a city...and add human nature. You may be biting off more than you can eschew... :wink:

But it is nonetheless an interesting topic because it is so human and so real. And it was why I felt the primary issue that always enteres my mind in thsi regard is from which direction *should* we examine this subject? As a prescrition (ie, laws, ordinances, codes that prescribe how to supposedly *FIX* our societal woes?) or as a description (ie, a reflection, a portrait, an example, sample, model of what we are, what our people and culture are all about at that moment in time?). Which is it?
Can it be both...really?

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Postby giventofly » Tue Feb 21, 2006 6:47 am

I agree it is a huge subject but i'm more concerned with the future concepts architects and developers have.
How are they seeing cities of the future? how are they/we answering all these problems of overcrowding rising sea levels landvalues over-transporisation (endless comuter chaos) social disconection, crime??

so really i think we can look at it in both ways at the same time.
it will be a social comment anyway as we endovour to solve the problems of our time which will differ from that of past generations so Zeitgeist is alive and well and living in our homes and cities. the only difference is the snapshot you mention doesnt really exist! as a notion it is constantly changing adapting and morphing that is at its essence.

But cities have always been designed Bath in England is a prime example, the width of the streets and co ordinated heights of buidlings and facades creates order allows sunlight into the street and helps air circulate throughout the city. buildings are narrow enough to make use of effective cross ventialtion. The over all apearance is of order and yet at the same time its not opressive infact quite the opposite and all the tourist and most of the residents marvel at its beuty and their spirits are raised .......architecture is achieved.
If in this case the streets were narrower and the buidlings taller, facades more irregular i probably wouldnt be talking bout it. These arrangements are not by co incidence the architects and devolopers of the city went to florence and rome in the 1800's.
We need to have visions for how we want to see our cities develope steer them away from the hazards of overcrowding, polution and de-centralistion and we can do it by treating it as a whole living organism.

Some one mentioned earlier lego thinking but its more simply joined up thinking - cause and effect. Cities are very tempermental and when a city is really buzzing everyone can't help but feel it but when its sick ...... and poor planning design and infrastucture can be the cause....
:P
takes another mouthfull and puts the spoon away!
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Postby mx2 » Tue Feb 21, 2006 9:26 am

I don; think I portrayed a snapshot if you think about it. I'll put it to you this way: I think architects and developers do not have future concepts on their drawing boards and would answer that they see cities as one building (project) at a time. The better ones will actually take the time to analyze the context, culture, natural elements, views, circulation, adjacent relationships...all in order to formalize a new concept that is site specific. As I first mentioned, it is *extremely* rare that an architect actually sits down with a blank piece of paper that reflects raw undeveloped land and starts drawing roads and sewers and zoning...

I think of it as a quilted fabric...we design to be a part of the fabric of a city. The idea is to capture the essence of place and to becme a part of it. Often ego's step in and decide to abruptly change the face of a city, sometimes with great success...most of the time to the detriment of the community. Sometimes this overzealous network of competing egos becomes a great recipe for urban excitement, and most of the time old decaying towns grow dusty and grey wishing an architect would come in a jazz up the place...pick your poison. I think cities are a s unique as fingerprints. It's not fair to lump all cities together and call them social failures. I totally disagree. Take NYC for example...if you've ever visited it is a wnder of a city how so many people crammed together live, love and thrive in such an environment. It's a far cry from pre-planned Seaside-type (see DPZ architects) Disney-esque living. It's almost like witnessing living concrete...

if any of this makes any sense, I fear you. 8)

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Postby giventofly » Wed Feb 22, 2006 1:27 am

its 6 am and i'm still working and even more worryingly so i can see your view. But whether cities are planned/design as a whole is not in question nor the percieved beuty. what is the future, not what will be but what do people dream it will be are we all thinking jetsons style bubble cars and trafficjams in the sky or a countryside covered in Solar turbines where we all live underground? are we dreaming of 3d planning where communities meet on raised platforms above fields in manahattan? where cows graze outside tiffanys and birds nest in lamposts on 42nd street?futurama jetsons or Dune?
what is genuinely the best way to encourage productivity and over all well being (clue Commerzbank_Tower)
and contextualisation is another long debate and deserves a whole thread unto itself i prefer the idea of removing buildings as a form of urbain regeneration......

Idealists where are you?

another pint of coffee please :|
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Postby mx2 » Wed Feb 22, 2006 12:57 pm

Briefly...

Check out the Metabolists and Futurists. They, as a group, portray the thinking and philosophies that some great architects have worked on in the past. I'm sure if you dig around you will find similar ideas based on contemporary methods, technologies and financing. I think the future depends heavily on three things: natural resources, population and and money. I doubt tremendously that we will ever be a "Jetsons" society, despite our romantic notions of flying cars. But "Dune" does have some merit in terms of extreme conditions of the planet that does have direct impact on our built environment. But these are so far off that it can only remain in theory. In the short term, the future of cities has more to do with population density and the "community" of a vertical living. I think green spaces are becoming very heavily promoted by many groups beyond architecture mostly because the outdoors promotes better living. Architecture that adapts to that will be seen more and mroe attractive and the money trail willo follow suit. For now, these are seen as unecessary expenditures by developers but more and more architects are doing great job at selling to them the added value...which is partly why the value of real estate is shooting through the roof, WORLD WIDE!

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continuing the quest

Postby giventofly » Tue Feb 28, 2006 6:54 am

I'm more looking for specific examples like Plan Voisin Paris or the Broad Acre scheme or the Bionic Tower, Buckminster Fuller and Yona Friedman's work.
Large scale urban regeneration schemes or New build thats openly address the issues of transport density politics(to an extent)the environment and scale.
Where architects designers artists theoreticians and planners have attempted to address the City as an entity that can be design or planned in a 3 dimensional sense.
Most of these schemes such like the Mile high or Plan voisin were never built but the ideas are still very relevant and incredibly influential. I have read many books on the subject but feel i am still missing obvious examples....
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after being locked away in a library for a long time

Postby giventofly » Tue Apr 18, 2006 5:39 am

i think in order to contunue this thread successfully the terms Vertical and horziontal city needs to be redefined so here it is :
(be warned very theoretical)
Horizontal city
An ecocentric society where man lives in total harmoney with nature , depends on it for survival, food, shelter. Where the form of the city reflects a close relationship to the horzintality of the earth and an inherant understanding and respect for the cosmos and the God(S).(eg from neolithic to immediatly before 1AD.) Land value is based on neccessity for physical survival and intrinsic natural benifit.

Vertical City
A technocentric society where man is dominant over God and nature where he does not rely on natur directly for anything and the seasons and cosmos are almost irrelivant. Vertical structures are used where the landvalue in a monetery sence dictates size(real estate) Eg Manhattan Tokyo. Begain in 1AD with the creation of Monotheism and continued more rapidly when the industrial revolution hit in 1800's which accelerated us from an anthropcentric society(man was the centre of the universe) to a technocentric society which we to our detriment are suck in now......

TA DAAAAA!

now basically its a theory for everything its a very brief summary of the research in to how we got to this point........ theoreticians all apear to agree that we must attempt a return to nature as our disconnection from it is causing society to bulge as the seams on the constant piint of breakdown or explosion...but planting a few trees is not the solution nor is ending fossil fuel consumption though it would be nice
what is ?(that is the 3rd element)
what is the solution? how as SUPERARCHITECTS can we aid society through design of public spaces and new social housing (there is a huge amount of it going up)?
what futur for cities can we try and dream?
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Postby mx2 » Tue Apr 18, 2006 8:20 am

I think you're over-estimating (and generalizing) the culture of horizontal cities and under-estimating the vertical ones...and overall I don;t think it is any more complex than the simple idea that in dense areas (usually due to geographic limits) more people per square foot (or meter) means building higher. And of course with more people, you also get more social woes...and triumphs.

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