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"City centres are dense and intense urban areas. In the last couple of centuries, many city centres have increasingly changed from industrial and residential to commercial and leisure spaces. These changes became more dramatic by the end of the twentieth century, affecting the way we use and perceive urban spaces and the buildings that bind them.
Belfast is no exception, and with the broad process of suburbanization and zoning since the 1970s the city centre has become a space of either retail or abandoned and derelict spaces. Within this process, much significant built heritage has become at risk of dereliction and demolition."
"The conservation and reuse of existing structures as part of an integrated urban environment is only now gaining momentum. Existing and abandoned buildings represent a substantially under-utilised resource, while adaptive reuse could play a pivotal role in the regeneration of the built environment. The combined study of urban morphology and architectural heritage provides an innovative approach to urban design, not only concerned with the preservation of buildings but with a holistic and efficient reuse in the context of streets and public spaces. The project investigates the existing urban fabric of Belfast through surveying and mapping the streets in the city and the buildings that bind them, analysing among others, proportions, materials, urban furniture, mobility and accessibility of both streets and buildings."
Date: Wednesday 19th June
Venue: Black Box, Hill Street, Belfast