Between abandonment and rebirth: Categories of Urban Space

Cecilia Zecca*, Chris Mcginley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review


This study explores interdisciplinary studies related to the concepts and notions of place and urban abandonment, arguing that the architectural and urban knowledge is often reduced to an illegitimate linguistic simplification.

In particular, the work theoretically unpacks the concept of abandonment across two categories: empty places and urban fragments. These categories are used to contribute to a closer definition and understanding of abandoned space within urban and architectural disciplines. These abandoned spaces are interrelated by virtue of a lack of urban relations between parts of the urban environment and, in turn, between human interactions. This leads, the work argues, to a lack of defined or identifiable physical, social and urban functions.
These categories are verified with UK’s urban spaces taken as case studies and through urban analysis, observations and considerations related to their level of de-contextualisation within the urban context before being regenerated.

The conclusions are elaborated on conceptual explanations, critical overview of literature related to the urban and architectural theory as well as on the exemplar case studies of regeneration. By using the case studies as examples of project drawn on strong theoretical frameworks, the paper proposes guidelines for projects of reconversion and reuse for these spaces that, once reconverted, enhance public and social reappropriation.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes

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