Sidewalks, squares, streets, roads, pedestrian areas, crosses, paths, green spaces, courtyards, pedestrian ways, markets, train stations, bus stops, commemorative or symbolic places, spaces for disabled persons, industrial areas, benches, schools, bridges, libraries, gardens, museums, meeting places, walls, collective transports, fountains, bicycle paths, expositive areas, outdoor theatres, residual spaces, monuments, cemeteries, highways, shopping malls,…
The urban reality “offers” us an ample and diversified catalogue.
We deliberately use a “commercial” verb, as the city of today seems to embody the logics of the market, lives a physical and a meaning shredding with its constitutive values.
The city offers, but it’s not represented by certain places. We don’t associate the living values with these places, rather only functional instruments.
Investigate the issue of public space is an excuse to reflect on the city as a whole.
The public space is the central element of chance encounters and serendipity whereby men and women are able to turn the unexpected into opportunities, constraints into opportunities, in new relationships and projects.
Basically, the city take shape and identity from its open spaces, the needed constitutive matrix of the urban landscape and of the human mental landscape. The idea of public space tends now to coincide with the idea of void, but at the same time distances himself from it; beyond a purely functional vocation, the void can better communicate the aesthetic sense and symbolic sense that every place has to communicate.
For those empty spaces also consider urban areas of rupture and discontinuity to be considered not as a blank to be filled, but as an opportunity to understand the territory to establish or re-establish connections and relationships in time and space.
Therefore it would be appropriate and desirable that the processes of modification of the reality could build on the potential offered by the free spaces: the places through which it is possible to imagine and reveal a new way to experience and enjoy the city.
Gaps to be filled, but with ideas, social and vitality!
by Saverio Massaro
Credit Photo: nutritionpost.wordpress.com