A few notes to (re)think the design of public space in the contemporary city

In the onset of architecture mediatization, heralded by the hyper-enhanced image and icon, we note that both city-building and public space materialization endorse, in most cases, generic and functionalist solutions, with prominent consequences to city-structure and its perception. As to theoretical reflection, we find approaches that, for the most part, don’t seem even to grant support to a consistent practical knowledge, one bound to tackle the concerns and challenges bred by the city of today. In this article, we aim to assess and reflect on those theoretical premises and intents that, in our view, should steer the development of public space(s) while framing it as a design problem. It is argued that public space should (continue to) be designed and materialized with architectural and urbanistic criteria in mind, i.e., considering morphological attributes and methodologies that in the last decades have seemingly been snubbed or simply discarded.

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