Architecture Category

How HS2 should learn from HS1’s urban errors?

St Pancras Way will one day have active frontages, costing millions more than the initial HS1 investment. The blank frontages and negative street character that were originally built will eventually be transformed to create a place that London deserves. In the meantime, people walk through the loading bay, across the security barrier, past the blank […]

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Space Syntax City Projects Walk

On Tuesday afternoon, 3rd September, I led a walking tour of built projects by Space Syntax. Trafalgar Square Royal Festval Hall Tate Modern One New Change New Bloomberg Headquarters (under construction) Willis Building 30 St Mary Axe Heron Plaza (under construction) Liverpool Street Station retail concourse Broadgate, Exchange Square Barbican Arts Centre

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MSc Advanced Architectural Studies – graduate employability

A talk given at the 40th Anniversary celebrations of the MSc in Advanced Architectural Studies – the “space syntax” MSc at University College London, 3rd September 2013. Good evening, everyone. Let me begin by paying tribute to the genius of Bill Hillier and Julienne Hanson. Not only for pioneering a theory – the theory – of […]

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Integrated Urban Modelling – Space Syntax’s approach

I’ve written before about the benefits of using science-based models in the planning and design process. I’ve raised concerns about the frequent lack of objective analysis in urban and building projects, and the risks this creates in decision-taking. Basing important decisions on gut instinct and experience, then willing on success with little more than hype, […]

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Unbuilt Britain: 3. A Revolution in the City

Broadcast 26th August 2013 on BBC4, featuring Space Syntax analysis of Wren, Hook & Evelyn’s plans for rebuilding the City of London after the Great Fire of 1666.   Link to the programme on the BBC website Link to the programme on YouTube Download a presentation of Space Syntax’s analysis “Using her skills to uncover […]

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Darwin CBD – Workshop 1 – Transcript of Tim Stonor’s presentation

Given by audio link to Darwin CBD Masterplan Workshop 1 on 21st August 2013. Download the presentation, including voiceover “Good afternoon, everybody. My name is Tim Stonor. I’m the Managing Director of Space Syntax and unfortunately I’m not able to join you for the workshop today. But my colleague Eime Tobari is with you and […]

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Key questions for Smart and Future Cities

1.         The nature of transaction The principal purpose of cities is to facilitate human interaction and, as a result, socio-economic transaction. Cities are transaction machines. With the rise of online transaction, what will be the role/nature of physical transaction? How will the physical and online worlds interact to create a “digital urbanism”? 2.         The nature […]

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Teaching urban design – a sketch for a new approach

Sketch… Space Syntax is keen to play a role in initiatives that embed the Space Syntax approach in everyday urban practice. The watchword is “dissemination”. Our aim is to create a professional landscape that uses Space Syntax as an everyday approach to the planning, designing and general governance of places. Here are some of my thoughts […]

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Smart cities – why, what, how, how?

Some advice for people promoting a Smart City approach. Prepare your answers to the following questions: 1.      Why do we need “smart” and do we even need cities any more? First, provide a clear and simple explanation of why cities are important ie what they do that is special: they arrange physical buildings within spatial […]

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Are streets the answer – yes, but…

Yesterday’s launch by think tank Policy Exchange of a report calling for the removal of inner-city high rise estates and their replacement with streets is a welcome contribution to discussions about the design of future cities. The report, authored by Create Streets, concludes that high rise estates are unsafe, antisocial and economically substandard. By proposing […]

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Old Street – putting the genie back in the bottle?

Old Street Roundabout is a heady intersection of urban movement flows: on foot, on cycles and in vehicles, including the Tube. But it is currently a mess, out of place within the surrounding network of generally convivial streets. In order to appreciate the severely negative condition of the place you only have to walk to […]

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Vince Cable visits Space Syntax

On 15th November 2012, UK Secretary of State for Business, Vince Cable, visited the Space Syntax London studio. Here’s a summary of the visit on Storify.

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Going to “work” is actually going to “interact”

Why is people movement important in buildings? In a knowledge economy, the key role of buildings is the production and dissemination of new knowledge to drive innovation. Awareness leads to interaction leads to transaction. Spatial layout works with management style to create a “spatial culture”. Corner offices v corridors People should sit based on need […]

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Parametric Thinking & Making on Architecture and Urbanism International Conference

Call for Abstracts It is hereby announced that the Parametric Thinking & Making on Architecture and Urbanism (PaTMAU) International Conference will be held at Tunghai University in Taichung, Taiwan, during 24-25 November 2012. Further information on this event will be announced and continually up-dated on the conference website. Timetable Invited scholars will process submitted abstracts […]

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A short film about Space Syntax

Tim Stonor, Managing Director, Space Syntax “The population of the world is increasing and, as it increases, more and more of us are living in cities. As cities have grown in the 20th century they have often grown to disconnect people. Space Syntax has discovered that many of these problems in cities – disconnection, lack […]

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Quality Streetscapes Conference notes

My slides This first part of this presentation introduces a new approach to valuing urban design – one which allows design decisions to be embedded in real estate valuation calculations. The approach connects design to the rateable value of retail, commercial and residential property offerings. It allows investment decisions to be related directly to design […]

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Future Cities_Cities of Transaction

Thinking about the future of cities is not a new challenge. From Christopher Wren’s plan for the post-fire rebuilding of London in 1666 to Ebenezer Howards’s Garden City concept, to Le Corbusier, to Bladerunner, human ingenuity has been tasked with anticipating the future. A problem, if we care to admit it, is that these plans […]

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Notes for AGI Conference talk: Measure, map, model, make

My slides Great placemaking is a process combining art and science. There is a place for both and indeed a need for both. Two problems. First, urban planning is largely an analogue discipline. Too many diagrams and watercolours. Not enough science. And, when science is present, it is seen as an adjunct, not as a […]

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Tim Stonor appointed Visiting Professor at the Bartlett, University College London

Press release from Space Syntax Limited Space Syntax director, Tim Stonor, has been appointed a Visiting Professor at the Bartlett, University College London. The award was made by UCL Provost, Prof Malcolm Grant. It is a title conferred upon distinguished individuals from the professions.

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