The Space Between: Urban Places, Public Spaces & Tall Buildings

An output of the CTBUH Urban Habitat / Urban Design Committee

It is becoming increasingly accepted that greater urban density is required to achieve more sustainable patterns of life, in order to reduce energy consumption and thus combat climate change. The concentration of people in denser cities – sharing space, infrastructure, and facilities – offers much greater energy efficiency than the expanded horizontal city, which requires more land usage as well as higher energy expenditure to facilitate infrastructure and mobility. However, the full implications of this push to greater density, especially vertical density, are not fully understood, and cities around the world are grappling with the question of how to move towards greater height and density while still maintaining a high quality of life.

As the world population continues to densify, the need for urban amenities becomes amplified. The development of open spaces of various scales will help offset the effects of neighborhoods increasingly filled with tall buildings. This CTBUH Technical Guide analyzes how to approach urban habitat adjoining tall buildings, highlighting case studies of open spaces at varying scales to help readers understand the ingredients that make them successful – or the lack of ingredients that holds them back from their full potential. In addition, public spaces across cities are analyzed holistically to determine how cities as an organic whole approach the concept of urban habitat.

This Technical Guide is the product of the CTBUH Urban Habitat / Urban Design Committee, which was formed to study the role of tall buildings within a city and how those tall buildings affect the quality of life for those that live or work within them.

Principal Authors: James Parakh, Jason Gabel & Daniel Safarik
Coordinating Editor: Daniel Safarik
Editorial and Directional Input: Antony Wood
Layout: Liwen Kang, Kristen Dobbins & Annan Shehadi
Publisher: CTBUH, Chicago, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-939493-57-9
Soft cover 224 pages, 8.5"W x 11"H

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