Commenced in January 2007
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Renewed Urban Waterfront: Spatial Conditions of a Contemporary Urban Space Typology

Authors: Beate Niemann, Fabian Pramel


The formerly industrially or militarily used Urban Waterfront is a potential area for urban development. Extensive interventions in the urban space come along with the development of these previously inaccessible areas in the city. The development of the Urban Waterfront in the European City is not subject to any recognizable urban paradigm. In this study, the development of the Urban Waterfront as a new urban space typology is analyzed by case studies of Urban Waterfront developments in European Cities. For humans, perceptible spatial conditions are categorized and it is identified whether the themed Urban Waterfront Developments are congruent or incongruent urban design interventions and which deviations the Urban Waterfront itself induce. As congruent urban design, a design is understood, which fits in the urban fabric regarding its similar spatial conditions to the surrounding. Incongruent urban design, however, shows significantly different conditions in its shape. Finally, the spatial relationship of the themed Urban Waterfront developments and their associated environment are compared in order to identify contrasts between new and old urban space. In this way, conclusions about urban design paradigms of the new urban space typology are tried to be drawn.

Keywords: Composition, congruence, identity, paradigm, spatial condition, urban design, urban development, urban waterfront.

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