From informal to formal public space: the organization and institutional transformation of tactical urbanism movement in San

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Tactical Urbanism (TU) has become a force in urban design which cannot be ignored. Its representative is a new approach in requesting new types of public space which have changed the traditionally top-down, long-term planning process to bottom-up, action-oriented experiments to improve the public realm. TU is implemented by different sectors with different motives, but the ultimate goal of TU is the same: trying to improve the built environment with some low cost, fast, flexible installations to test the outcomes of the intervention. There are growing attention on the social media and the internet about the transformation of the unutilized streets or spaces, such as the too wide sidewalks or vacuum parking lot. Through the simple intervention such as putting some tables and chairs for the public to rest, landscaping the parking lot to be an attractive site of the neighbourhood, etc. The collective name of these activities called “Tactical Urbanism.” These small activities can enhance the people’s quality of life and well-being. Its impact on urban design is increasing, and thus more and more people pay attention to this movement. Although the outcome of the TU is obvious (e.g. better public realm), few people know the mechanism of it and its background. TU is not a sudden occurrence but an outcome of some movements in the U.S. (e.g. Play Street, Open Street, Guerilla Gardening, Pop-up Retail, Pop-up Cafe). It has many different forms in different cities, but the spirit of it remains the same.
Book of proceedings: Annual AESOP Congress, Spaces of Dialog for Places of Dignity, Lisbon, 11-14th July, 2017
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