ro | en
ArgumentNo. 11/2019

Habitation and its vicinity. Typologies and ramifications of the concept of neighbourhood. 1947-1989

  • / “Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Urbanism, Bucharest, Romania


Beyond its relevance as an architectural concept and the different ways it is generated by new insertions in the city, the idea of nearness or vicinity is a subject of great interest in the field of urban sociology - urban life in itself is defined by the presence of human interaction. The emergence of symbiotic vicinities in the city is the result of a type of urban development that accepts and embraces the significance of social phenomena and doesn't deprive the city of their positive influence. There are many cases in the evolution of a city (Bucharest becomes a very valuable case study in this regard) where economic or politically oppressive circumstances harm the city and interrupt its natural social porosity. In such cases, in which, at an urban scale, the vicinity (as a positive concept) transforms into the urban void (as a mainly negative concept). Starting from the idea that the present conflictual situation that resides between the housing blocks of flats and the pre-existing urban fabric is a consequence of the hybridisation between vicinity and urban void, this paper aims to establish the difference between them as well as their area of confluence.

At the same time, to further illustrate the theoretical intentions of this paper, a set of case studies or concrete situations will be discussed in the bigger context of communist interventions. It will be pointed out that with the change of the social and political context, the understanding of vicinity and public space will gain new ways of expression at urban level.


Related articles

Claudia-Gabriela Pipoș-Lupu
A dissection of the past. Architecture as Instrument (2018)