The image of US 280 in Michael Tomberlin’s post – Birmingham committee revisiting sign rules is very telling of the suburban landscape where signs breed like rabbits and litter the road side with retailers using the mantra ‘the bigger the better’ rather than ‘less is more’. Signage littering the urban landscape is not endemic to just Birmingham or the USA for that matter, all across the globe streetscapes are littered with A-Frames blackboard signs, bus stop advertising and billboards. But do they really urge passers by to go and shop or are they just landmarks to designate the location of the store? I think it is the latter and that all cities should have formulate signage guidelines (many already do) including the number of signs allowed and the size.
Guidelines should also go further to streetscape and city government signage & intepretation. Often towns and city landscapes becomes a minefield of directional, parking and place marking signs that have been added layer by layer by various departments and changes of staff who continually add more signage to the landscape. All cities should at the least evaluate their main streetscapes and see where they can reduce the clutter to provide a clean landscape that is visually easy to navigate and often more pedestrian friendly. Often city signage for an area can be easily amalgamated into one sign(or sign family) such as place marking and area parking restrictions.
Read more about what Birmingham is proposing at [al.com]
Though suburbia has failed to live up to the promise, its appeal isn’t hard to understand. The damage inflicted on cities during the last 50 or 60 years went a long way to make them unlivable. Even now, the suburbanization of Toronto continues.
Hume looks at various players and how they are enabling each others behaviour.
Once upon a time a good facade and interior design was all that was needed to sell apartments in Thailand. However, the market is getting very competitive with developers focusing more on Landscape Architecture to differentiate there projects from other similar developments.
“It has become another significant selling point for developers to lure buyers,” Mr Surajak says. “More focus has been put on the design of the surroundings or common areas that allow residents to enjoy outdoor activities and a good atmosphere.”
JAJA Architects recently shared first prize for ideas competition for the development of Åndalsnes in Norway. “The Landscape Loop” is a project that emphasizes, improves and connects the inherent qualities of Aandalsnes to one unified entity. It is a project that gathers the city’s development within a belt that wraps around the town core – creating a series of “blue” and “green” urban spaces while establishing natural connections between city and landscape.
The square is located in the western part of the Ben-Gurion University campus in the city of Beer-Sheva, Israel. The existing buildings encompassing the square (the Faculty of Art, social activities and the Administration building) and the art gallery to be built there in the future are all designed to offer services and to constitute links connecting with the community on subjects related to art and social contexts.