Urban design project, Residential area

Supervisors: Prof. Andres Alver, Prof. emer. Veljo Kaasik and architect Indrek Rünkla

Fall term of Year 4

The main topic in Year 4 is the most extensive one among the sections related to residence, requiring a comprehensive understanding of the respective spatial development, the underlying reasons, contemporary opportunities and also visions and ideals related to the future. The task comprises two parts – urban design focussing on more extensive structures and volumes (in fall term) and their further developments into residential buildings, flats and the surrounding areas (in spring term).

The studio is concerned with the existing urban structures aiming to deduce the reasons for their emergence and evaluate the various qualities of the urban space. Students analyse the role of various relations in giving preference to one solution or another. In case a pattern tends to present itself as inevitable or obvious, it usually hides a number of strong social or natural forces. Then again, there are also various alternative perspectives leading to different solutions. By attributing various modalities to various forces, we may have very different towns. We focus on typical and idiosyncratic urban layout patterns and their emergence. Simultaneously students also complete a number of practical tasks leading to their own proposals for establishing or reconstructing a particular settlement.

Relating one’s personal experience to urban design decisions requires a considerable effort on behalf of the students. In order to facilitate the process, the project has been given a more general topic to guide the work throughout the term. Thus, we have considered shrinking cities, the development of towns near railway lines, bringing work back to the city, the idea of Tallinn and urban sprawl.

In the assessment of the project, we consider the student’s comprehension of the essence of the task, the skills to synthesise knowledge to set new tasks, similarly their ability to differentiate between the nature and importance of problems and to prioritise them. We also assess the creative approach and the skills to develop the dominant visions. The final version of the project must be understandable to external reviewers as well as laymen.

Over the years, we have published the following books on the completed projects: “Ääred ja piirid“, “Tallinna orbiidil“, “Tallinnast välja” and “Tallinna idee“.

Share with friends:

Posted by Pille Epner