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Master Thesis

Planning a new "city-park": from urban project to societal resilience ?

Abstract : This research arises from the will to investigate the role of the urban project in society's transition towards a more resilient system. The study is based on the idea of a "global" resilience (WALKER et al, 2009), that is, a long-term condition which considers a “crisis” or “collapse” as a continuous process instead of a punctual event (COCHET, 2019). Therefore, urban projects are analysed as a tool for creating “adaptable” societies able to rebound from the climatic change, ecological risks but also political and economic crisis through which cities are expected to go in the coming decades and that are already taking place. (SERVIGNE, STEVENS, 2015) Being aware of the central influence of environmental issues in this scenario such as the end of fossil fuels, the generalized pollution and a declining biodiversity, contemporary urban projects tend to return to and “rework” the ideals of a sustainable city that have already had their place in the history of urban planning since the last century. A “renewal” of concepts such as the one of a “city-park” is today proposed in different cities through what seems to be the rising of more ambitious urban projects, surpassing an aesthetic or morphological definition limited to urban design which is now replaced by a will of changing how society lives in cities. Under this hypothesis, this study aims therefore to understand why and how these projects could be able to actually change our societies organization by "reorienting" the city’s evolution towards a sustainable functioning and a resilient system. Considering that urban societies are not (only) defined by technical-scientific aspects, the research will center the discussion on the social aspects of a city’s performance, that is, a focus on the effects and reactions of and on the urban project regarding human’s behavior in society. Studies in Environmental Psychology are therefore the base to understanding how urban spaces interfere in individual and societal changings during the first part of this work, serving to define an analytical framework for a comparative study of two “city-park” projects on its second part. Urbanisms’ history and theories are also reviewed through a social and ecological approach in order to identify how this relation has been evolving, pointing out the main challenges for today’s projects. Despite having a mainly theoretical approach, in fact, the present study suggests a reapproximation of urban projects to societal practices on daily life believing those are the real catalyzers to cities' transformation. Often separated by an assumed distanciation between its techniques and its scales, those two distinct “realities” - urban projects and society’s day-to-day activity - are nowadays invited to converge through an integrated urban planning towardssocietal resilience.
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Master Thesis
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Maria Carolina Arruda. Planning a new "city-park": from urban project to societal resilience ?. Architecture, space management. 2020. ⟨dumas-02965364⟩

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