Social Space/Public Space

Magazine / Jul - Aug 2016

Social Space/Public Space

Asian cities face a crisis of public space. This is not just the neglect or fragmentation of public space, it is also a loss of meaning that is critical to the making of social space.

Part of the ongoing challenge is that public space is undervalued in city planning, partly that it is misunderstood. The formal articulation of elements—squares, plazas, promenades and parks—are important, yes, but public space in Asia has another scale. The challenge then is to recognise the interstitial and embedded nature of shared space that is the DNA of cities. Design becomes a question of how we preserve and activate these spaces in a changing urban context.

Public space is important in an objective sense because cities are densifying. Densification leads to congestion and smaller personal living spaces. The space outside then becomes a kind of communal living room. In Asian cities, public space is a functional necessity, same as roads or utility grids. In the subjective sense, these spaces are an opportunity for people to connect with one another; social space is the cornerstone of urban well-being. This requires a more nuanced approach to questions on what kind of space, for who, as well as how it corresponds with lifestyles, past and present.

In this issue, Joshua Comaroff unpacks what we mean by public space, how public becomes social, with Singapore as case study. There are also several projects from Bandung, a city that continues to innovate interstitially. The Mumbai Esplanade is at the other end of the scale, large enough to be called socio-spatial infrastructure.

There are other emerging typologies of space that seek meaning through community farming. Nest We Grow is a prototype in Japan where neighbours come together to farm and eat. Floating Fields in Shenzhen is an abandoned factory that has been converted into an ecosystem of farming activities and a public park. The FuturArc Interview is with Sigit Kusumawijaya, one of the cofounders of Indonesia Berkebun, a movement that seeks to convert brownfield land into farms.

Predictably, this is a small sampling of what is out there, constrained by print deadlines. If you know of a public or social space that speaks to the question of how your city is evolving, drop us a note. We would be happy to consider it here on the website.

Table of Contents
2Q 2022: NEW & RE-EMERGING ARCHITECTURE
MAIN FEATURE
Imagining a Building Culture Revived on Architectural Robustness

COMMENTARY
The Sky as a Source of Cooling & Other Tropical Innovations
Igniting Ideas from Other Insights
Reinforcing a Labour of Love
Re-emergence of the Vernacular in India

HAPPENINGS
SIWW & CESG 2022
The potential of circular materials for architectural use
Revitalised Tebet Eco Park opened as a Green oasis
How emerging architectural technologies can decentralise healthcare
Milestones & Events
Products

FUTURARC INTERVIEW
Wendy W. Fok

IN CONVERSATION
Aswin Indraprastha & Carlos Bañón:
Next-Generation Technologies in Architectural Design


PROJECTS
OCEANIX City: Keeping Future Cities Afloat
A Futuristic Idea of Using Nature to Heal & Manage Diabetes
Cocoa Craftsman Factory: The Building as a Chocolate Melting Machine
Daylight Ducts for High-Rise Offices


Previous issues:
1Q 2022: HOUSING ASIA
MAIN FEATURE
Homes, not Houses
3d-printed housing in India
Homes built by homeowners in Sri Lanka
Carbon Tech Modular House in Indonesia

VIETNAM FOCUS
Adapting Vietnam’s Urban Street House to High-Rise Apartments
Hong Ha Eco City
The Nest Modular Housing
Tan Phu House

COMMENTARY
Public and Private Housing in Malaysia

HAPPENINGS
8th APHF: Mainstreaming Green throughout the housing value chain
Oceanix City
Milestones & Events
Products

SHOWCASE
Habitat ’67: Critique on a Classic & Its Modern Interpretations
Safdie Architects: Charu Kokate

FUTURARC INTERVIEW
Toyo Ito

IN CONVERSATION
Eko Prawoto: Living More Authentically With Nature

PROJECTS
Bay Window Tower House
AMN Student Housing
Baan Hom Din
Jervois Mansion
Permeability Housed

4Q 2021: YEAR-END | NOW & THEN

MAIN FEATURE
Aspirations Versus Realities of Utopia in India

SHOWCASE
Charles Correa Now

YEAR-END FOCUS: CARBON
A Case Study from China
Reaching Carbon Neutrality in Hong Kong
A Singapore Perspective

HAPPENINGS
Special Focus: Reimagining the Future at IBEW 2021
Indonesia’s Progress Towards Carbon Goals
FuturArc Readership Survey 2021
Milestones
Products

FUTURARC INTERVIEW
Jason F. McLennan

COMMENTARY
Brazil’s Favelas

PROJECTS
Heron Hall
Climate Pledge Arena
ASHRAE World Headquarters
HMTX World Headquarters and Materials Innovation Center
Singapore Zero Energy Cases
Green Shore Residence Phase II
Tianheng Bayview

3Q 2021: CITIES ISSUE | EQUITY AND URBAN INTERVENTIONS
MAIN FEATURE
How Can We Design Cities to Be More Equitable?

SHOWCASE
Tebet Eco Garden

CITY PROFILE
Hoi An
Kandy

HAPPENINGS
Special Focus: World Cities Summit
In Conversation With Anupama Kundoo
Milestones
Products
FUTURARC INTERVIEW
James Shen

COMMENTARY
Why All Cities Should Prioritise Green Walking

PROJECTS
Shi Ban Qiao Mixed-Use Development
Zhuhai Xiangzhou Green Connector: Jing Shan Trail
Matsubara Civic Library
Porte de Montreuil

2Q 2021: WOMEN IN ARCHITECTURE
Main Feature: Intersectional Feminism for a Sustainable FutureKotchakorn Voraakhom
Yasmeen LariGanga Rathnayake
Serina HijjasChing-Hwa Chang
Sonali RastogiMilestones
Maria Warner WongProduct Advertorials


1Q 2021: ENERGY

THE FUTURARC INTERVIEW
Hossein Rezai; Lee Chin Wei; Serina Hijjas
A Carbon Neutral Skyscraper: Arthaland Century Pacific Tower
Reaching Energy Targets: Singapore Institute of Technology;
The Joyce Centre for Partnership & Innovation
In Conversation with Jan Glasmeier
Sky GreenSteering Clear of Catastrophe: Solutions from the Built Environment
Integrated Production Facility for Organic IndiaWater Becomes the New Crude and Other Things
SMU ConnexionMilestones
Product Advertorials

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