Sustaining the cultural character and social fabric of a community through urban design : the case of Lisbon
Title: Sustaining the cultural character and social fabric of a community through urban design: the case of Lisbon. Name: Francisco Antonio Ribeiro da Costa This research provides an important contribution to the sustainable maintenance and redevelopment of the cultural character of urban spaces and of associated communities. The prototype proposed defines a set of urban design criteria to serve as guidelines to urban interventions, using the case of Lisbon as the experimental context. The methodology used in the research is essentially qualitative, following a triangulation of methods (an adaptation of Hypothetic-deductive, survey and case study). The first phase explores historical and recent trends and concepts in urban design in order to provide a holistic vision of its dimensions. Subsequently two sets of criteria are proposed, one for spatial design and a set that encompasses the social/cultural aspects of the communities considered in Lisbon. The criteria, defined in this way, were analysed using a triangular methodology formed by a survey firstly to a range of actors in Lisbon society, secondly to a panel of experts (Portuguese and International) and finally by direct observation of spaces in the city. The key "part" of the prototype is constituted by a relation matrix that links together the two sets of criteria enabling comparison of design proposals with the impact the intervention can have on the communities' social aspects. This is supported by strategic guidelines for the application of the defined criteria. Testing with the groups showed that the prototype forms: • A useful tool, that facilitates the better practice in urban design. • A reference frame for academic reflections. • A methodological support for urban management. • A balancing factor in sustainable urban development. Thus, the prototype provides guidance to the main actors in the urban xiv planning and development process through a range of flexible rules that support decision-making.