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Article
From form to process: Re-conceptualizing Lynch in light of complexity theory
URBAN DESIGN International
  • Sharon Wohl, Iowa State University
Document Type
Article
Disciplines
Publication Version
Accepted Manuscript
Publication Date
11-1-2017
DOI
10.1057/s41289-017-0048-6
Abstract
New Urbanism’s disposition towards urban design emphasizes creating places that, in part, derive structure and meaning from ‘imageable’ components. These components resonate with the formal categories articulated by Kevin Lynch. That is to say, New Urbanist projects emphasize defined streets (edges) neighborhood coherence (districts) civic buildings (landmarks) connective public open spaces (nodes) and gridiron street networks (paths). Lynch, however, deemed that such urban features arose from dynamic processes, whereas New Urbanists pre-designate formal features without full consideration of their functional dynamics. In order to better situate this notion of ‘functional dynamics’, this paper argues that urban settings can be considered as examples of complex adaptive systems (CAS). The paper re-purposes Lynch’s formal categories to discuss CAS dynamics in urban settings, with processes rather than forms providing the essential mechanisms with which to achieve the conviviality NU projects aspire to.
Comments

This article is from Urban Design International (2017), doi:10.1057/s41289-017-0048-6.

Copyright Owner
Macmillan Publishers Ltd
Language
en
File Format
application/pdf
Citation Information
Sharon Wohl. "From form to process: Re-conceptualizing Lynch in light of complexity theory" URBAN DESIGN International Vol. 22 Iss. 4 (2017) p. 303 - 317
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/sharon_wohl/5/