A Sense of Place
Developers are looking to put the soul back into cities with developments that deliver more than the sum of their parts
Developers are looking to put the soul back into cities with developments that deliver more than the sum of their parts,
One of the dictionary definitions of the word “place” is “a person’s home.” Just as we might turn a house into a home by filling it with soft furnishings, heart-warming mementoes and artworks, so developers, urban planners and architects look to transform unloved districts into destinations people will want to call home. They call this process “place-making.”
These large-scale developments are designed to create not merely a collection of new buildings, but a community that includes shops, offices, leisure facilities, cultural venues, transport links and even schools and medical facilities.
Initially mooted in the 1960s as a means to revive communities, place-making has become the fashionable approach to holistic urban redevelopment in cities around the world, from London to Los Angeles to Shanghai and beyond.
Place-making sweeps away the old planning practice of zoning homes, shops and offices into separate districts. Instead, they are clustered together so each activity benefits the other. For example, stores and restaurants attract office workers and homebuyers, because people like to shop and socialise close to where they live and work. To help create that all-important sense of place, public art is also installed, and public spaces for concerts and social activities are provided.
Connected living Playa Vista in Los Angeles aims to be the complete livework-play package
LA Confidential Clockwise from top right: Jewel Homes offers luxe living in Silicon Beach; Playa Vista is a beachside tech hub; an outdoor entertaining area in Jewel Homes