Spatial & Urban Dynamics

This course aims at providing the students with a comprehensive understanding of urban environments´ spatial and physical dynamics. It includes two foci. One focuses on transformation and change over time in the existing urban fabric, its use, and its meaning to different users. It provides the students with the different theoretical basis that explain those spatial dynamics such as theories of building adaptability, of production and reproduction of public space, rules of appropriation, stakeholder analysis, and systems of activity settings that work together across the conventional domains of intervention and management of the built environment. This enhances the capacity of students to better predict people’s behaviour and use of spaces, patterns of mobility and propensity to participate in the upkeep and maintenance of the public realm. This enables the student to design more appropriate, adaptable environments with higher use value to diverse users, where communities can partner the public sector and reduce the burden on the government and where the built form can stand the challenge of time and transform to changing needs. The other introduces the fundamentals of urban physics that addresses ambient environmental issues related to urban-level performance of the built form as well as the interrelations among various urban systems including the urban microclimate, energy infrastructure and mobility systems. Both foci integrate in their impact on the design and regeneration of parts of cities including infrastructure, mobility, detailed land use, building morphology, and public space. Applications would include adaptive re-use and conservation of heritage building ensembles, revitalisation of heritage urban patterns such street markets, hammams, or artisan districts, as well as the urban regeneration of informal areas, historic cores, downtown areas, waterfronts…etc..

Course ID
ARUD 325
Credit Hours

1. Know about different stakeholders; their roles and influences in real project environments; 2. Know what to design and what to let happen based on a better understanding and prediction of the forces that would react to the designed intervention, whether it is users or other stakeholders and influencing factors.
3. Formulate design outputs in different formats necessary to communicate with different stakeholders.
4. Better predict the impact of any intervention; the ripple-effect of tangible and intangible change in the context; socio-economic factors, land value, urban microclimate, energy, infrastructure and mobility…
5. Discern lessons learnt from project cases and precedents being able to identify what is transferable and what was circumstantial and cannot be replicated.
6. Better predict people’s behaviour and use of spaces as well as the opportunities they would perceive and act upon so that post-intervention change and development would be directed towards desirable conditions.
7. Design more appropriate, adaptable environments with higher use value to diverse users over time, so that the built form can stand the challenge of time and transform according to changing needs.
8. Apply participatory design methods to partner communities and engage them in the development, upkeep and management of the built environment and public space.
9. Motivate and engage local government and other public sector institutions that could influence the development and sustainability of any intervention.
10. Know what is needed from experts in other disciplines such as urban planning, urban economics… based on an understanding of their domains and working tools.
11. Identify the underlying “Theory of Change” in urban development projects