schiemann weyers


Perm Suburban City Extensions, RU

Visiting the recent Perm suburban extensions, the public interest seems to be reduced to the very basic infrastructural needs: Getting to the individual property by car (4x4 recommended), electricity, water supply and canalisation (assumption). There is no sign of inhabitants showing any interest in the public realm or any kind of social activities. As a result, there is a strong developed trait to protect oneself and ones property. Streetscapes are dominated by high fences. There seems to be a lack of social control and the public realm looks abandoned. Although making these observations, we would like to postulate that there must be a common need for a particular quality of the ‘living environment’. Furthermore we allege that in case of up upgrading the living environment - starting with the public realm - a social participation on part of the inhabitants will certainly occur. In a second step, when a common interest concerning the living environment is developed, rules and regulations about the interaction between public and private can be established, improving the environment and protecting the public (=common) interest.
In a series of case studies, different urban concepts and diverse living environments are introduced by projecting archetypical low rise developments onto the Perm situation. Apart from demonstrating a possible urban and typological diversity, it is a plea for a contextual approach. This approach does not require a ‘special context’ - but considering the fact of colonizing the final parts of the city and also building on the edge of the ‘green belt’, this approach gets a striking relevancy.
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