Street Pictures – Deflected Views

I like nothing better than walking Medieval cities while studying the pictures formed by street scenes.  This comes from my appreciation for Unwin’s book “Town Planning in Practice: An Introduction to the Art of Designing Cities and Suburbs.”

Nothing in city planning literature has been more important but so little understood, and thus used.  I think planners consider his advice to be a relic or a history rather than a guide for today.  I’ve heard it dismissed as outdated site-planning, as if site planning isn’t the MOST important component in all of planning or that lessons from 1000 years of city building are worthless. That’s a shame.

You can read it online here. Or better yet buy a copy.

Here are three examples of deflected views, a typology adapted from Unwin.

Deflected views are not terminated but rather give the impression that the street continues.  This is perhaps my favorite type.  It says “keep going, there is more to see.”  It is inviting, eternal.

IMG_0889Cortona

dingle delfectDingle

This is a broader street obviously and at first glance it may appear to be a terminated scene – but notice how the stone building is canted, giving it a deflected quality.

deflected cortonaCortona

This is a longer view and much more sinuous than in Dingle.

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