Exploring Everyday Streets
StreetSpace Studio – Donegall Street/Clifton Street
Agustina Martire - Pat Wheeler
Team: Anna Skoura (Architecture)/ Kayla Rush (Anthropology)
Consultant:Birgit Hausleitner (TU Delft)/ Jane Clossick (London MET)
Client: Department for Communities – Urban Regeneration Office/Belfast City Council - Regeneration
StreetSpace is a research and teaching project, which seeks to understand the significance of local mixed use streets, by analysing their physical, historical and experiential aspects. This multidisciplinary project aims to provide an alternative way of planning, preserving and developing streets. Mixed use streets are complex entities that connect diverse areas of the city. They have evolved slowly through history, but can be radically transformed by redevelopment. Scholars value their plurality, diversity and authenticity; while urban designers and planners value their physical aspects, often overlooking the social construct of the people who use them. On the other hand, policy makers look for the social, economical and political value of mixed use streets. To be able to bridge this gap between academia, practice and policy we need to understand all these values. So, how can we study streets beyond the usual tools of built environment professionals? StreetSpace explores streets with a rich mix of uses, with complex histories and especially those that risk losing their distinctive identities.
In this studio, students from architecture worked with anthropology in collaboration with the Department of Communities to address the corridor made by Donegall Street and Clifton Street and Crumlin Road to understand its present conditions and its future potential. The first semester was a collaborative analytical studio based on graphic anthropology methods, while the second will challenge students to produce proposals for the area that will consider and enhance the diversity, vibrancy and spatial quality of the street.