WHAT IS A “PLACE”?
As always, Mirko began the week 11 lecture with a video. However, this week, guest lecturer Professor Peter Richards asked the class how many locations, cities, or places they recognised within the video. One answer was given, the Trevi Fountain in Rome. The video displayed numerous cities in various countries around the world, however, not many landmarks were shown, and this made the different images harder to locate. The Trevi fountain however, is easily recognisable and an iconic landmark. This is a representation of what a place is, and how we perceive it.
The connection between urbanism, urban design and the creation of “places” was a common theme in the lecture. Peter suggested that architecture is the creation of buildings, but urban design, is the creation of places. But, what is a place?
Having studied Placemaking in Architecture, in first year, my perception of a place, is a space that holds a certain value to the user, whether that be superficial such as the appearance or deep and meaningful, such as a memory. Places are spaces that symbolise elements of our past and showcase our values and beliefs. Creating a place requires a deep understanding of the users, their needs, their cultural backgrounds and their perceptions of the space and how they will use it. Places are memorable and recognisable.