Oxford Dreaming Spires

Viewpoint ľNagarajupalli Mesa David– Nigeria/India.

NM DavidCities and Building

The importance of being able to visualize at urban level by every student of architecture cannot be overemphasized. It is necessary, at the undergraduate level, to open up the young minds to the opportunity to design a positive urban environment through architecture, an architecture that goes beyond individual building. We have left urban design to be taught at the post graduate level for too long. We even feel shy to call it urban design and hide it under the topic “CITIES AND BUILDINGS”. It is time we brought exposure to urban design principles down to the undergraduate level, so that the new architects coming out of our schools are able to understand and appreciate the dynamics of the city and its urbanism. We should inculcate creative and practical urban design skills early enough in their training.

Their young minds should be trained not to limit their design capabilities to just the buildings they are designing, but also learn the specifics of dealing with the surrounding urban open spaces; their articulation through careful attention paid to the textures of enclosing elements, the ground surfaces; possible views obtainable from streets and above all how they fit into the streetscape, and finally how they fit to the macro form of the city.  This should go a long way in keeping our buildings and our cities beautiful and sustainable.

This course is as vital for architects to learn as it is vital for the city society to survive and live in dynamic friendly environments. Urban planning has failed the society as it cannot visualize urban form. It is preoccupied with planning regulations and bye laws. When it comes to the spatial aspects especially the spatial character they are at a loss. So the architect comes to rescue. Every citizen has a right to experience the city in its totality-- the streets, the pavements, the architecture and the entire urban realm.

Arc N. M. David
Senior lecturer, Department of Architecture
Enugu State University of Science and Technology, Nigeria

 

 

 

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