Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Spatial Capital: A Proposal for an Extension of Space Syntax into a More General Urban Morphology
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Architecture, Urban Design. (Spatial analysis and Design (SAD))
2010 (English)In: Journal of Space Syntax, ISSN 2044-7507, Vol. 1, no 1, 30-40 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Although space syntax is often presented as a configurational theory of architecture, this tends to hide the more fundamental claim that it is also an analytical theory, a theory based on analytical science rather than on the normative or ideological claims normally found in architectural theory. This article proposes an extension of such an analytical theory in the context of urbanism by using space syntax areas in urban morphology that earlier have not been directly part of space syntax analysis. If one allows for some simplification, one can say that the main variable of urban form analysed in space syntax is accessibility. This article introduces two other variables: density and diversity. Density, the dominating variable in geographic analysis of urban space, is fundamental for the development of knowledge about urban space and in the practice of urban planning. Diversity, at least since Jane Jacob’s writing of The Death and Life of Great American Cities, has been another focus for urban analysis and urban planners, yet one that has proven to be more difficult to address.

         A study of an urban area in Stockholm identified three convincing correlations: 1.) a correlation between integration and movement; 2.) a correlation between accessible building density and population; and 3.) a correlation between accessible plots and diversity indices such as number of age groups and lines of businesses. Whereas the first correlation is not very surprising in the context of space syntax research and the second correlation is interesting mostly because of its original measuring technique, the third correlation must be considered surprising and an original finding.

The present study proposes that the three ways to measure the three variables accessibility, density and diversity could be combined into a more general analytical theory of urban form, directly stemming from space syntax analysis, significantly widening the scope of space syntax into a more general urban morphology. In addition, it is proposed that these measurements capture something that can be called spatial capital, that also can engage adjacent scientific disciplines.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 1, no 1, 30-40 p.
Keyword [en]
analytical theory, urban form, accessibility, density, diversity, performativity, urban design
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-53200OAI: diva2:469224
QC 20111227Available from: 2011-12-22 Created: 2011-12-22 Last updated: 2011-12-27Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Marcus, Lars
By organisation
Urban Design

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Total: 203 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link