Territories in crisis. Call for papers. Extended deadline to May 30
Europe’s territory is an extraordinarily complex and dynamic base, 9.5 million square kilometres in size, big enough to contain 816 million inhabitants, with different characteristics and parts that are strongly connected to each other. It includes compact conurbations, small towns, fragments of urban sprawl and countryside hemmed in by dense construction, industrial estates, large-scale infrastructure, nature reserves and agricultural land. The growth in the relationship between its different parts is influencing a new urban situation that, as Francesco Indovina has highlighted, is marked by the absence of density, intensity and continuity. The era of the “urban sprawls”, so careful to discover the many scattered shapes of the urban landscape, is behind us.
The economic crisis that has dragged on since 2008 has marked this territory with a minus sign. It has affected the role and size of large-scale industrial systems, not to mention welfare systems, manufacturing districts and residential conurbations. It has reduced the amount of resources available to private as well as public assets. It has stiffened the regulations guaranteeing the way cities work and their quality. However, it has also encouraged the self-production of services and public entities and has driven the search to identify new solutions to new problems. It is therefore an impediment with many contradictory aspects and can be a stimulus for innovations in use, space and policy, creating new issues for architectural design.
With this in mind, we have identified three topics that we feel are crucial, as they clarify the territorial implications of the crisis that require the fine-tuning of technical and architectural skills.