Changing contexts and visions for planning: the case of madrid central area

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SoftGrid in association with AESOP and IFHP
How to cope with the concept of scarcity as an issue for planning? What does it imply for a traditional planning system based on a set of instruments aimed at guiding the city in the long term? To what extent does a master plan have the capacity to deal with the issue of scarcity? How can these plans be successful - or not - in this attempt? In which way does the changing economic and social context influence the type of planning pushed forward by the authorities in charge of the matter? This article tries to give some answers to these questions by exploring the interplay which exists between the overall economic context, the dominant vision in planning, and the planning instruments produced for cities affected by changing circumstances, drawing on the master plans designed for Madrid during the last 30 years. The article is structured around these three key aspects, with the aim to extract some lessons from this experience. The laboratory used to explore these questions is the central district of the city. It is an urban realm to which all the approved planning instruments have given a special treatment to improve a traditionally deprived area, whatever their supportive vision.
Architecture & Planning in Times of Scarcity : Reclaiming the Possibility of Making. 3rd AESOP European Urban Summer School 2012, Manchester
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