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Title: The role of typomorphology in sustaining the cultural identity of Chinese cities : the case study of Nanjing, China
Author: Chen, Fei
ISNI:       0000 0004 2675 3510
Awarding Body: University of Strathclyde
Current Institution: University of Strathclyde
Date of Award: 2009
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There are two research problems in Chinese urban studies and contemporary Chinese cities. Firstly, Chinese cities have a remarkably long and rich history, but Chinese urban forms have not been sufficiently examined. Secondly, at present, Chinese cities are experiencing rapid growth and transformation, which presents great challenges in terms of the maintenance of cultural identity in their urban forms. Therefore, the research intends to sustain the local identity of Chinese cities through a deep understanding of their urban evolution. Inspired by both western architectural typology and urban morphology theories, the research establishes an integrated typomorpho logical approach for Chinese cities, aiming to reveal local synchronic types and typological processes of particular urban forms, and accordingly, generate design suggestions for the local context to maintain cultural continuity and create quality urban spaces. Nanjing is selected as the case study since it has a strong presence of historical urban forms. These are organised according to seven elements within a hierarchical framework: the general plan and silhouettes at the city scale; street networks, streets and urban blocks at the district scale; urban public spaces at the block scale; public buildings and houses at the building scale. The research makes three contributions to the field of urban studies. The first one explains the transformation of the city over time, and enriches the documentary material on Chinese urban morphology. The second outcome is design suggestions for each urban element of Nanjing, which enable new developments to fit into the local context and achieve cultural sustainability. The third outcome is the development of typomorphology as a methodology that can be applied to other Chinese cities, helping them to sustain their cultural identities through urban design in future development.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral