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IPHS Conference 2020 Moscow

GUHP- Sponsored Panels

 (for complete abstracts and CVs please contact Carl Nightingale at

Thanks to Professors Carola Hein, Rosemary Wakeman and Li Hou for running the committee that organized all of these panels and shepherded them through the IPHS acceptance process. Sadly, this conference has been cancelled due to the COVID 19 pandemic.

Keep tuned for the possibility of running some of these panels as GUHP ZOOM ProSeminars in the months ahead.


Panels 1-3, Urban Transnationalism and Cultural Exchange

Transnationalism has influenced urban space, spatial planning and regeneration, and housing development for centuries. Its impact is visible in politics, economic development, social and cultural transformation, and the growth and structure of the built environment. Transnational exchanges have accelerated and broadened knowledge-sharing and the movement of population and materials. National self-awareness in many countries following decolonization has led to a lively debate about the nature of these transnational and global exchanges. Recent scholarship argues that transnationalism was another form of colonization. Foreign powers exported or even imposed their ideas and strategic plans on the dominated territories. The transnational exchange of urban planning ideas has also overlapped with increased globalization (Afshar and Pezzoli, 2001) and facilitated social democracy, free-market capitalism (Fainstein, 2001), and commercialization. Former “developing” countries have attempted to marginalize or change the forced imprint that is somehow caught up in the torrent of globalization and entangling cultural fusions.

These three panels examine the concept of transnational urbanism and build on existing studies such as “cross-movements” noted by Healey (2010a), synthetic international planning communities mentioned by Ward (2010) and exchanges among officials from Europe and North America to the “East” “South” or “developing” countries in the early 20th century (Kenny, 2009). The papers relate to the process of urban planning from design to implementation, from daily use to revitalization and heritage, from municipal practice to policy-making in both the historical and contemporary settings.

The panels examine questions about transnational exchanges, westernization and post- colonization, and their influence on urban studies and the rising consciousness in diverse communities. We specifically question the bi-directional transnational exchanges among epistemological systems, regimes or sovereign states. To what degree is urban transnationalism and the global exchange of planning ideas another form of intellectual colonization or a cautious and thoughtful selection led by free choice.


PANEL 1: Transnationalism in the Historical Setting

Organizers: Kaiyi Zhu, Delft University of Technology (sponsored by Carola Hein) and

Rosemary Wakeman, Fordham University


Elmira Jafari (TU Delft): The Cold War Transnational Planning Practices: Constantinos

Doxiadis’s Proposal for Unlimited Urban Growth of Tehran (1972)

Dr. Yingchun Li & Dr. Chen Yang (Tongji University) From New Village to Workers & #39; New Village: Transformation of Urban Housing Planning Ideals in Shanghai, 1930s-1950s

Fatma Tanis (TU Delft) Transnational movement in dissemination of architecture and urban planning ideas: Urban Design Competitions for Izmir in the Early Republican Era

Prof. Robert Lewis & Dr. Paul Mitchell Hess (University of Toronto) Planning post-war Toronto for high-rise apartments: transnational ideas and actors

Dr. Yichi Zhang (University of Oslo, Norway) Hebei New Area in Tianjin, 1902-1912:  Implementing Japanese commercial and industrial urbanism in China


PANEL 2: Transnationalism in the Contemporary Setting

Organizers: Kaiyi Zhu, Delft University of Technology (sponsored by Carola Hein) and

Rosemary Wakeman, Fordham University


Harry den Hartog (Tongji University; TU Delft) Panel Transnational lessons and exchanges regarding the adaptive reuse of urban watersides in port cities: Comparing recent efforts in Shanghai with cases in New York and Rotterdam

Dr. Plácido González Martínez (Tongji University) Next Station Heritage: The Customization of Subway Infrastructures in Listed Heritage Areas in Shanghai.

Katya Knyazeva (University of Eastern Piedmont) The Rehabilitation of Shanghai Old Town: Visualization and Public Policy

Bernard Cherix (Bernard Cherix Architecte) & Billal Mahoubi (SBB Schweizerische

Bundesbahnen AG) Reverse architecture: An open format digital twin for heritage buildings, casestudy Vallorbe Station, Switzerland


PANEL 3: Transnationalism in Colonization and Decolonization Settings

Organizers: Kaiyi Zhu, Delft University of Technology (sponsored by Carola Hein) and

Rosemary Wakeman, Fordham University


Dr. Nabaparna Ghosh (Babson College) City Planning, Property rights, and the Shifting meaning of Caste in colonial Calcutta

Dr. Yanchen Sun (Tianjin University) Planning Diffusion in Foreign Concessions and Chinese Areas of Early Modern

Kaiyi Zhu (TU Delft) The Position of Colonial History in Shanghai’s Heritage Conservation Practice: A Discourse Debate in the Urban Transformation of Historic Communities in Concession Areas

Prof. Robert Home (Anglia Ruskin University) Informal Settlements of African cities: where is the urban form?

Tamer Elshayal (Harvard University) From Shelter to Human Settlements: decolonization, the politics of scale and the transnationalization of urban planning at the United Nations Center for Housing, Building and Planning (1965-1977)


Panel 4: Heritage of the Socialist City 

Organizer I. Kukina


The attitude of society and professionals to the heritage of socialist period is not so obvious as to the historical landmarks. It was a period of introducing into urban planning ideas of social guarantees for residents, through the construction of socially significant facilities, the mass construction of housing, progressive prefabricated technologies for that time.  The other problem is that buildings and environment of the socialist period continues to change, to be completed, and to be reconstructed without regard to the originally designed. On the other hand, extremely minimalist standards were applied to the social city, which made its environment architecturally inexpressive, not very comfortable. The redistribution of employment, the latest business technologies have led to the fact that commercially active zones and other social relations are being

formed in the residential environment.

At present, studies of what is actually a socialist heritage,

which of ideas have proven their worth, require new methods of renovating the existing

environment are extremely relevant. Important is the assessment of the socialist heritage in the history of urban planning in the context of international experience.


Barbara Engel (Karlsruhe, Germany)


This paper discusses the specific features of the socialist city referring to the original ideas and intentions that were related to the he foundation of socialist cities during Soviet Era. 

Planning and construction of socialist cites were embedded within the context of historical and social conditions that existed at the time. Soviet planners cited aspirations for the construction of large housing estates and new cities, such as the vision of a better person in a better society and ‘the rejection … of the city of capitalism, the slums, the inordinate luxury, and the appalling density ’. These goals also open up a view to an international debate: the search for a new city as a response to the unsuitable living conditions in the industrial city of the late nineteenth century. Urban planning and design in the Soviet Union – like art and architecture as well – was used as an instrument of ideology. Integrated within a system of state order, urban design played a political role that was to be demonstrated on a social, structural, and visual level. Hence the guiding principles for urban development emerged under certain preconditions, such as technical feasibility, and above all subservient to political goals. Furthermore, the political circumstances were important preconditions for urban planning and developments.

The paper emphasizes the visons and ideas, the urban guiding principles, and the physical structure and form of socialist cities.


Klavdia Kamalova (Krasnoyarsk, Russia) 



The attitude of society and professionals to the heritage of Soviet period is not so obvious as to the historical landmarks in Russia. The main problem is that buildings and environment of the Soviet period continues to change, to be completed, and to be reconstructed without regard to the originally designed. Therefore, we can state the violation of the functional, spatial continuity due to the integration of citywide objects; reduction of safety because of unauthorized transit pedestrian flows and activities; limited physical accessibility due to large-scale intervention of urban and service processes. All of them are changing the morphology of residential areas and its main value - open spaces in particular. They provoke the uncontrolled introduction of new functions in the ground floor, mainly commercial.

The majority of changes are adversely affecting the transformation of ground floors. They belong to the street and city property and split up the residential territories and apartments. Most of converted ground floor premises are concentrated at the intersection of pedestrian and transport paths and near public transport stops: that is, in places defined by the original planning organization. The impulse uncontrolled commercial functions, chaotic process of "capture" of semiprivate (yard) space caused a number of problems: violation of the integrity of private physical boundaries due to the integration of citywide use objects, degradation of spaces adjacent to residential blocks, and of the operating modes of the residential facility, owing to the organization of services, interference with the operation of private dwellings, deformation and insecurity of yard space due to the displacement of internal red lines and increase in traffic, change in operation of intra-district areas due to the crossing of transport and pedestrian paths, insecurity of residents in general, owing to integration of transit pedestrian ways of unauthorized people, processes, activities, restriction of physical accessibility of the territory, inefficient use of land recorded as green space.

As the result of this research, we can formulate the typology of housing ground floor reflected in the differences of urban context variation. As an implementation tool, a number of typological urban models such as a pedestrian street, a collective recreation area, a courtyard defines the necessary function of ground floor for creating a comfortable living environment. Thus, the new typology assumes, in addition to the usual residential function, the allocation of the following types: for services, for storage of vehicles, for office space, for public, etc. 

This study is based on an analysis of housing estates of Krasnoyarsk region in the 1956–1991 construction period. 



Iana Chui (Krasnoyarsk, Russia) 


Public spaces are formed depending on the integration of various types of activity and forms of ownership. Planning of public spaces is inseparable from land use. Land tenure is divided into two main types - private, belonging to one or more persons (collective), and common-use lands (public). Between private and public spaces, their hybrids stand out, spaces that perform a public function but do not meet all the criteria of the traditional public space. Semi-public and semiprivate spaces belong to such spaces. Semi-public spaces should be considered a public-private space - spaces in public ownership are leased. For example, space for temporary markets, for terraces and cafes. Also, semi-public spaces include privately owned public open spaces (POPOS) or, alternatively, privately owned public spaces (POPS) - privately owned spaces that are available to the public. To this type include the area of roof, corporate space, occupying a central place in large office centers. Collective and public responsibility form the contemporary models of a universal public space and transform its physical parameters, material and spatial structure and form of social interaction. Make public spaces difficult, dynamically changing their urban form under the pressure of many functions and their density in the territory.


Natalia Ungaeva, Irina Fedchenko, Irina Kukina (Kransnoyarsk, Russia)


Open public spaces are an important part of residential areas in terms of social, economic and functional relations. The process of chronological morphological transformations of the public spaces are studied depending upon the typology of the mass housing micro districts built during the socialist period of construction. It was concluded that in solving the problems of the residential construction in 1960-80 years a number of progressive principles were proposed, including continuous open green space systems. However, the same minimalistic requirements were made for the recreational area system as for the residential area as a whole.   Environmental problems were not fully considered, but only partially sanitary-hygienic. The analysis of the current state of territories of the prefabricated mass housing within the boundaries of public easements is given. In detail, on the sample of the Solnechny microdistrict of Krasnoyarsk, the main trends in the transformation of public recreational spaces from the construction period to the current state are demonstrated.  In connection with the privatization processes and with the change in the policy of land surveying, the economic attitude towards open recreational spaces has changed. In connection with the development of small and medium-sized businesses, pedestrian streets and public cores with various objects of attraction are formed on the territory of micro districts. The active integration of small and medium-sized businesses in public spaces contributes to the formation of commercially active zones. A global problem is ensuring the accessibility of open spaces in every sense: physical, social, economic. There is a clear structural differentiation and isolation of internal spaces, which requires a search for solutions not only by their functional and systemic reorganization in accordance with the requirements of modern society, but also by resolving conflicts of interest at the legislative level. The scale, number of stores, and the morphology of micro districts of different types and years of construction radically change the configuration of open spaces; accordingly, different design methods are required, taking into account modern requirements for a comfortable environment in social and economic aspects.


Panel 5:  The Home Front: Military Housing Developments since 1945 

Gabriel Schwake (TU Delft) and Dalia Dukanac (University of Belgrade)

This panel explores the underlying ideas behind the development of military housing and settlements. The question of housing military personnel and the role of armies in the development of residential settlements dates back to antiquity. Pre-modern examples usually consisted of discharged soldiers occupying civilianised military strongholds as a continuation of the armed campaign; safeguarding their empire’s interests in return for lands and other privileges. In modern times, with the birth of the nation-state and the nation-army, housing military personnel turned into an award for their service and an integral part of the social contract. In the second half of the 20th century, providing homes to veterans and serving military personnel turned into an essential factor in the formation of a middle-class worldwide, and an integral part of the emergence of housing subsidy as a key aspect in the relation between the state and the individual. Nevertheless, in countries where the army played a major societal and cultural role, military housing and settlements where not merely a question of shelter, but rather a showcase of leading national values. The cultural and political capital associated with the military enabled it to take a leading role in the production of space. Moreover, in some cases, during intense privatization, the military was able to transform its symbolic capital into real estate, providing its officers with the valuable financial assets as well.

Focusing on similar case studies in different global settings, this panel aims to discuss the role of the military in the production of housing and residential settlements. Analysing their political and societal roles, this panel aims to illustrate how military housing effected the formation of the built environment, introducing new typologies and influencing urban and architectural alike. The papers in the panel will focus on the economic, social, cultural, and defence consideration of the military, and how these were implemented in the production of space. Bringing together a unique set of case studies from Iran, Serbia, US, and Israel, the papers of this panel will discuss different local implementations of a similar architectural and urban phenomenon. Focusing on a global phenomenon, the papers in the panel will focus on the issues of cross-cultural exchanges, globalization, local identities, domesticity, nationalism, and privatization. Moreover, the panel aims to launch a new collaboration between different researchers worldwide interested in similar case studies around the globe and to stimulate further academic cooperation. 


Participants and Papers:

Elmira Jafari     (

Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, Delft University of Technology, Delft, Netherlands, "The Army and New Developments in West Tehran"

In the late 1960s and following military aid programs from the United States, Iran’s army became one of most powerful governmental organizations which occupied huge tracts of land in and around Tehran. During the IranIraq war (1980-1988), the army took possession of nearly 25 percent of empty stretches of land in west Tehran to expand military warehouses and soldier barracks. In the early 1990s and by the advent of neoliberal urban governance in Iran, the Tehran municipality encouraged development of infertile lands in the west to compensate the shortages of housing, recreational, and social services in Tehran—a growing city with nearly 7 million population. Being one of the main landowners enabled the army organizations to take a leading role in constructions of high-rise residential towers in the region, serving the army families and the war veterans. By rising attraction and the flow of investment towards west Tehran, this district became a place for speculative development and capital-oriented competitions. The paper seeks to unravel the overlooked role of the army in the development of west Tehran, branded as ‘a symbol of Tehran’s future’. This paper argues that there is a need to re-consider the army as a dominant landowner constantly involved in Tehran’s urban development.

Elmira Jafari graduated in architecture from Shahid Beheshti University (SBU) in Iran, in 2013. She professionally practiced architecture in Tehran and won several national competitions. Currently, she is PhD candidate at Department of Architecture, at TU Delft. The major focus of her PhD is on the transmission of urban initiatives into Iran and the complex process of reception and implementation of Western planning ideas in development of the capital city of Tehran.



Dalia Dukanac      (

Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade, Serbia
"From emergency accomodation to permanent transformation: the long-term ipact of housing displaced Army personnel n Belgrade"

As the largest beneficiary of the state budget following WWII, the Yugoslav Peoples’ Army distributed its resources across various sectors of the economy, with a large proportion going to the production of housing. Consequently, many pioneering housing studies in Yugoslavia were carried out under Army patronage, and resulted in official housing norms and regulations. In the context of mass housing construction spurred by large internal migration and accelerated industrialisation throughout the country, New Belgrade (Belgrade, Serbia, former Yugoslavia) represented a unique testing ground for such housing research, design and construction. The aim of this paper is to investigate both the official housing strategies and informal everyday practices applied to homes and neighbourhoods of New Belgrade Block no. 23 (designed for Army members in 1968 and built between 1969 and 1975) in the changed conditions of the 1990s Yugoslav civil war and the ensuing disintegration of Yugoslavia. Combining archive plans and data, interviews with residents, and different representation techniques, this study explores how domesticity and home culture were introduced in the leftover spaces of socialist housing, generating a tendency to appropriate, alter, expand and merge such spaces within collective housing on both formal and informal bases.


Phoebus Panigyrakis      (

Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, Delft University of Technology, Netherlands

"Urgency and Delight: Militarizing and demilitarizing the design of the US house, 1942-1954"

While the beginning of the 1940s signaled an urgent situation for house design in the United States, by the beginning of the 1950s the emergence of the consumer market brought a new situation that is still the paradigm at hand. The slums, military needs and homelessness of the 1940s meant for architecture a renewed allegiance with functionalism, standardization and pre-fabrication – in short modernism. In that context architecture was rendered into information-based design, and the architect a supervising manager of the building industry, mainly working on public or military-oriented government-sanctioned projects. From 1949 though, a new shift started happening. The recovered economy brought back big-scale manufacturers and developers that put an end to public building programs and instead positioned private individuals as the main clients of architects. The rise of the consumer market demilitarized the architect’s profession, and brought it back to single-family house design, interior design, and decoration. Consequently, by 1954, the word “modernism” was scrapped in favor of “contemporary” and the notion of ideology was subsumed by lifestyle. This paper will make a case of this transitional history through content analysis of American architectural periodicals–namely:
the Architectural Record, the Architectural Forum, House & Home, and House Beautiful.


Panel 6: Socialist Internationalism: Exporting and Importing Models of Factory Design in PRC, GDR, USSR and beyond



Li Hou

Professor of Urban Planning

Tongji University, College of Architecture and Urban Planning


This panel examines the international transfers, circulations, and adaptation of factory design within and beyond the socialist bloc during the Cold War era, through comparative approach, on a global scale.  Industrialization was seen as the core means of modernization for the socialist countries and the Third World and the factories were the symbol of modernity and their spatiality representing a new way of social organization. The technical assistance on factory design and construction had become a special bond to connect the socialist countries and the Third World. These studies explore the export and import on different models of factory design by different countries, and to understand the different interpretation or adaptation employed by the importers or the exporters to fulfill the ideology of “socialist internationalism” locally at the time.


Making the Tropics Productive: Socialist China's Factory Design and Building in Africa, 1960s-70s

Liu Ye, New School for Social Research, USA


The 1960s-70s had witnessed a massive aid network built by the socialist countries in the new-born Third World as part of the worldwide anti-colonial and anti-imperialist movement. China played an active role in conducting technical assistance to many African countries in that period to support the latter's liberation and modernization projects. A major difference, however, between China and other socialist aid providers in Africa was that China heavily concentrated on planning “productive projects”, especially factories and the affiliated workshops, offices, and worker dormitories. Based on ethnographies, interviews and archival works, this research reviews the largely overlooked China's factory design and construction in several African countries with most Chinese aid during the Cold War. The analysis is deployed in two ways. Firstly, it points out that those factory projects in Africa were an overseas echo of the genealogy of Chinese socialist spatiality shaped since the late 1950s. Such a spatiality was characterized by state guidelines such as "industrialization without urbanization", "prioritizing the productive architecture" and so on, which made the factory complexes the most legitimate space to nurture new socialist subjects. It will discuss what do the concept and metaphor of “production” represent in socialist modernity especially for nations that strived to achieve industrialization. Secondly, the research argues that huge numbers of projects in tropical areas in Africa unexpectedly provided China with a set of new geographic knowledge and global imagination which was previously “exotic” to the Chinese socialist worldview. The “tropical Africa” in was long classified as an exotic, primitive, or idyllist world during the colonial rule and only had limited construction in cultural, residential and entertaining facilities. Overcoming the difficulties of the tropical-acclimatized building techniques, the Chinese technicians planned out the modern industrial spaces in Africa which attempted to turn the tropics into productive sites that could achieve economic independence. To sum up, to make tropics productive was not only a pro-socialist development strategy but also implying an decolonizing geographic epistemology.


Transnational exchange in the socialist world: GDR Specialists in China (1952-1964)

Tao Chen, Tongji University, Shanghai

From 1953 to 1964, more than 1000 East German specialists were sent by the Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands (SED) to participate in China’s economic construction. Together with their Chinese fellow engineers and workers, these specialists contributed greatly to China’s industrial modernization. Even when the Soviets withdrew their specialists from China in 1960, the East Germans chose to stay. Before China reopened itself to the world at the end of the 1970s, the East Germans had become the last group of East European specialists stationed in China and weathered political and economic storms such as the Great Leap Forward, Great Famine and Sino-Soviet split. Drawing on multilateral archival sources from Germany and China, this project aims to shed light on this transnational exchange between China and Germany during the Cold War.


Planning Heritage of the “156 projects”: Comparison and Reconstruction in USSR and PRC

Fedor Kudryavtsev & Li HOU


“156 projects” term largely reference in Chinese history to vast program of industrial construction undertaken during the implementation of 1st and partly 2nd Five years plans. However, it was an urbanization program as well – the phenomenon that was paid much less attention and studies. There were 35 cities engaged with 16 of them to become centres of nation significance with several industrial sectors. These massive changes of China cities, having happened in 50s –beginning of 60s, left both tangible heritage of built urban forms and city layouts as well as intangible legacy of planning ideas and social models that inspired them.

“Learning from the Soviets” policy of that time in China makes comparison with Soviet time industrial development practice in Russia a starting point to study and rethink this legacy. This practice envisaged the factory as the focus point of the city and its integration with surrounding urban areas in one whole. Along the research, several principles of such integration that were transferred to China become apparent for cases of Luoyang Red East Factory, Xi’an Textile city, Wuhan Iron and Steel group. They include linear zoning developed by N.Milutin in book ”Sotsgorod [Socialistic city] in 1930, factory layout with central boulevard and symbolically impressive main entrance found in “flagships” of Soviet industry of 30s like Kharkov tractor factory and ZIL automotive factory,  neo-classical pattern of low-density residential areas with axes of main boulevards and prospects focused to the factory like in Magnitogorsk and many other Soviet cities built in 30s and 40s.

These characteristics were summarized at current stage of the research as “city as technology”, “factory as the city” and “city as grand ensemble” principles. Altogether they have created an urban form, namely socialist new cities, that suit many of contemporary demands like pedestrian proximity, affordable housing and social services, social inclusion and green, human scaled and architecturally impressive environment. This evidences application in China of holistic and comprehensive urban model of an industrial city evolved from Soviet theories and practice of 20s and 30s and even earlier concepts of Tony Garnier’s cité industrielle and garden city of Ebenezer Howard. 

Nonetheless further studies of the “156-project” heritage reveal that it was not purely replica from USSR to PRC. They were mostly adapted and modified, or even had provided advanced model of socialistic industrial city.  The project will begin on a comparative study between the industrial projects in the USSR pre-WWII and the ones in PRC post-WWII, and to summarize and then reconstruct the evolving concept of planning socialist industrial city.

Panels 7-8: Port City Futures: the port culture of global transformations (1800-2000)

Organized by
Prof. Dr. Carola Hein Technical University Delft Prof. Dr. Dirk Schubert

HafenCity University Hamburg Prof. dr. Paul van de Laar, Erasmus University Rotterdam

Port cities have long been among the first cities to engage technological, economic, spatial, environmental and other transitions. Over centuries, they have developed particular governance structures, spaces--a connective culture--to facilitate adaptation. Better understanding of the underlying historical mechanisms that put port cities in motion, will provide insights for major future transformations on energy, social and economic diversity and governance.

Port city regions are complex entities with unique spatial patterns and human interactions. Ports have wide-ranging influence on their urban and regional neighbours as portals of globalisations. A clear interface may be visible around the port and historical urban centres—often transformed into waterfront development for housing, shopping, commerce and culture, recreating a living port dissolved from the working port. The impact of the port reaches far beyond its inner-city borders and land holdings, creating a port cityscape that occasionally crosses national borders through dense infrastructural networks and port-related facilities and headquarters.

The main actors in ports, cities (and regions) have engaged with major transformations in interconnected ways building on shared values. Over time they have established practices, legal structures, risk-sharing financial mechanisms, spatial configurations that are the result of purposeful collaboration and collective responses to global challenges. We argue that this long-shared history has led to the emergence of a connective port city culture that has long facilitated the understanding between port and city actors as well as citizens and created typical urban identities. Notwithstanding local differences, historically port cities’ transnational relationships and interdependencies have converged into global port cultures and legacies that distinguish port cities from other cities within their own countries.

Understanding the underlying characteristics of shared values and port cultures is essential for port city regions’ future agendas.  Despite challenges by climate change, energy transition and a necessary social and spatial reordering of public space and port city relations, the historical precedents and foundations are often not recognised by major stakeholders. This session calls for papers that history matters for understanding and steering future transitions. We specifically invite paper givers to present case-studies that analyse the ways in which past transformations have changed port city relationships and that draw lessons from these earlier transformations for the future of port city regions. We are particularly interested in the examination of disruptions caused by energy, spatial, social, technological and cultural transformations and port cultural interdependencies. We expect that the papers not just describe these transformations and case-studies, but analyse them from the perspective of port city cultures


Winnie Goldsteen

When looking at a painting, one can experience the values it carries in emotions or a feeling of importance. This paper will analyze paintings of port cities around the North Sea. Port cities have been important cities in history, due to their leading role in the age of overseas trade and exploration. Because of this accessibility there is a diversity of classes, people and culture in these cities. The charming view of the waterfront provoked several painters to capture this harbor point of view. What is the influence of the image created with art of port cities of the North Sea and the value of its heritage captured in the images? To start, this paper wil show an analyses of the different historical maps and paintings of port cities of the North Sea, by filtering the architectural aspacts. Furthermore, these paintings and the existing build architecture form a part of the cultural heritage of port cities. Subsequenly follows an investigation of what the values of heritage are and how this can be measured. Both paintings and built architecture will be compared to articulate te value of the heritage of the built architecture and it’s urban planning. From this, one can conclude how harbour paintings influence the precieved image of port cities around the North Sea, creating a link between water and the built environment. Finally, this paper will analyze how this link is shown in cultural heritage and in what way it’s integrated in the urban planning design of port cities through time.



“Plans and projects transforming the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires in the beginning of the 20th century”.


Maria Cristina da Silva Leme.


By the mid of the 19th century there was a significant transformation in the urban structures of Latin American cities. The triggering factor was the epidemics that first hit port cities and then spread throughout the interior via the railway lines, killing thousands of inhabitants in the process. The malaria epidemic that had entered through the port of Marseilles in France hits the port of Buenos Aires in Argentina and the port of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.

We intend to compare the great urban transformations that had taken place in the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires from the mid of the 19th century to the early 20th century, having in mind the differences and similarities between the Spanish and the Portuguese process of colonization.


The economic expansion of these cities brought revamping and expansion works at the ports to cope with the new export relationships that had been established with Europe and the United States. Rather than being restricted to the docking and storage structures, these works extended to other urban areas through the embellishment and remodeling of squares and the construction of wide avenues.


The administrations of these cities were also mobilized to solve traffic congestion in central areas. They had to transform the urban structures inherited from the colonial economy. The issue of circulation was present from the outset in the definition of guidelines for aligning buildings and for constructing, widening and extending streets. However, these rules did not apply only to traffic fluidity. At the time, a new city model was being designed, with broader streets, aligned houses, squares and parks. These changes, which were carried out in a selective way and adapted to local conditions, were based on the broad reforms made by Haussmann in Paris and Otto Wagner, in Vienna.


The projects to improve Latin American cities had high regard for new areas near the traditional commercial centers and launched a gradual decentralization process through the displacement of commercial activities and of residential areas for higher-income classes. These interventions were implemented differently in grid-shaped cities such as Buenos Aires than on top of the irregular layout that had been adapted to the local topography of cities such as Rio de Janeiro.

During that period there was a constant presence of foreign experts acting as lecturers and hired consultants for the municipalities and professional associations. Contact between Latin American and foreign engineers and architects took place in a differentiated manner, both in terms of knowledge assimilation and international recognition.



Challenges and opportunities for Naples port-city-region

Paolo De Martino

Department of Architecture, Delft University of Technology and University of Naples Federico II

If two systems interact with each other for a certain period of time and then they are separated, they can no longer be described as two disconnected elements, but somehow, they become one system. In other words, what happens to one entity continues to influence the other, even if they are separated by a large distance. This phenomenon is described in physics as quantum entanglement and it represents an intriguing metaphor to argue that ports and cities–historically grown together– can no longer be analysed as separated spatial entities, rather as unitary system.

However, ports, cities and regions are separated today in spatial and governance terms. The separation refers to space, but mostly to a disconnection of actors which have started to plan ports and cities as separated entities since industrialization. Therefore, spatial changes in port cities can be better understood as result of actors’ interactions across different scales. For this reason, this article takes a spatial-institutional perspective dealing with historical institutionalism and its main concept of path dependence to better understand how actors influence space. Path dependence represents an inability to make a change due to historical belief. Path dependence and port cities has mostly been ignored by the literature except for few scholars who have mostly analysed path dependence in relation to the infrastructure and economic dynamics of ports.

The main argument discussed is that planning institutions in port cities are path dependent to the point that once certain paths have been established, these become very hard to change, generating long-term impacts. Therefore, the article aims to investigate how historical paths influence the relationships between ports, cities and regions today.

This article analyses the case of Naples where port, city and regional authorities find it difficult to define a sustainable coexistence of interests. In Naples, because of path dependence, actors are used to keep their positions and this limits the possibility for them to recognise each other interests. Path dependence refers to space and morphology of the specific port-city. Path dependence explains why the port of Naples has developed in a specific way and place. Moreover, it refers to governance and cultural constructs. In fact, the way people operate tends to create and reinforce a sense of continuity with the local culture, existing ways of doing things, and the urban palimpsest which the port belongs.

Historical archive research is combined to policy document analysis and interviews to the most relevant actors in Naples and presented as methodology to understand the past and better plan for the future, moving towards new forms of spatial and governance integration.


Dirk Schubert

Seaport City Hamburg: Maritime Traditions from the past and perspectives for the future

Hamburg has a long tradition as a seaport city, that goes back to the medieval period. "What serves the Port, serves the City" was always a saying. The port became important not only for the local but also later for the regional and national economy. The location of the port about 100 Kilometers away from the Northern Sea in the hinterland was seen as an advantage for a long time. Big environmental problems, global changes in technology and external shocks generated new problems for the port and the City State of Hamburg. Competing with other ports of the Northern Range, Hamburg now has started to overcome the path dependency based on the relevance of the port, including a specific type of governance and maritime culture. Increasing competitive pressure between cities and ports through new requirements and a shift towards new economic sectors implies special challenges for port cities. Although maritime heritage and related narratives generate still a unique city-port image. The Warehouse-District and the Historic Office District from the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century became meanwhile World Heritage status. But the transformation of waterfronts – not only in Hamburg – is going to be instrumentalized for branding and re-creating the image of the port-city.

This contribution identifies some of the problems First: dredging the River Elbe has come to an end and space expanding the port is limited. The port economy and value adding compared with other clusters are becoming less important. What can be learned from the past for the future and which paths can be taken for a more diverse and sustainable future of city and port of Hamburg? The port-city relationship is not only a controversial issue for involved stakeholders but became also a relevant academic topic. The common model “city in – port out” cannot be implemented and used as a model. Manifold problems whether and how city and port can co-exist and what types of a hybrid waterfront redevelopment are possible and coming forward, as well as the question is a full separation of port and city necessary and desirable.


The port of Rotterdam: the spatial construction of transitions since the 1870s

Paul van de Laar

Erasmus University Rotterdam

The multifaceted aspects of port cities are closely related to global trade networks and localised spatial structures. Diana Brand’s concept of bluespace offers a port typology to associate maritime-technological developments to dynamic spatial concepts. This paper uses Brand’s port typologies in combination with the model of revolutions in logistical networks, originally conceptualised by the Swedish regional-economist Å. E. Andersson. Logistical networks are systems in geographical space that are at the basis of all forms of movement, trade (persons, commodities, money) and connectivity (human interaction, ideas and knowledge). They are observable, permanent and consist of hard ware (infrastructure) and software (port culture, for instance governance structure, legal systems, education system, contractual arrangements etc.). They are, thus, a combination of soft and hard values. The conceptual ideas of logistical revolutions help us to analyse the consequences of major global transitions, which have impacted existing spatial arrangements and are directly linked to port culture. However, how are we able to use this concept in discussing future port transitions, which will be dominated by three major long lasting challenges: energy, economic (labour market conditions in combination with sustainable growth opportunities) and ecological transitions?

Rotterdam’s port expansion is an ideal case-study. Since the 1870s the port city region started to develop its ‘Transitpolis’ (a port city region’s dependency on Rhine-river and German trade and industrial connections). This created a port city landscape that changed from the representative pre-industrial waterfront into post-war modern industrial development areas (MIDAs) and peripheral container areas of Maasvlakte I en II . The planned petroleum and container landscapes created highly efficient logistical spaces, separated from the urban context. The former working city docks have been redeveloped in cultural hotspots, gentrified areas and leisure waterfronts since the 1980s. The Rotterdam’s case study shows that in the past the port city was successful in implementing new governance, institutional  and planning strategies to adapt to technological-maritime dynamics. But will these successful strategies of the past, which are embedded in a strong local port culture and path dependent growth scenarios, be flexible and resistant enough for future port challenges? By raising these questions for the Rotterdam port city region, this paper seeks to offer an analytical framework that can be used for comparative port city research on transitions, which will have a major impact on Europe’s future port city landscape, in particularly in the North-western part.

Keywords: Rotterdam, logistical revolutions, port city scapes, path-dependency, transitions

Paul van de Laar is Prof at Erasmus University and Director of Museum Rotterdam.


“Interdependencies between the port and the city: from the past into the future”

Lucija Ažman Momirski

In the past, the port and the city were mutually dependent on each other, they were in a close relationship with intertwined functions and spaces. The activities of the port often increased the population of the coastal cities enormously and the cities became one of the largest and most developed urban structures. Since the city and the port were united, the daily life of the citizens was also influenced by the vibrant commercial and other port activities that were part of the city life. The experience of everyday life in specific, identifiable localities of port cities, with its informal rules and specific history indicates the emergence of the special port city culture. This research focuses on the nature of the continuities and discontinuities of port city cultures observed in the past and in the present in the development of port cities; on the advantages and disadvantages of the exceptional urban growth of the ports and the cities on the port city culture; on the local port city culture as the most sustainable dimension of the local development of the port cities; and on the influence of the globalization processes on the local city port culture and identity. We argue that experience to date shows that the future of local city port culture and the future of port cities development may be more threatened by various national government interventions than by globalization processes. The study is based on changes in the port cities of the northern Adriatic.


Panel 9: Petroleumscape: tangible and the intangible practices

Organizers: Penglin Zhu and Carola Hein TU Delft 


The transition away from fossil fuels is in full swing and the days of petroleum are counted. From the 1870s onwards, petroleum industry has significantly influenced the urban forms, spatial planning and architecture design, as well as creating new social cultures. Urban planners and architects are required to carefully study the complex heritage of the petroleum era before making any future planning. Based on the UNESCO’s Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Culture Heritage in 2003, recent scholarship argues that the complex petroleum heritage needs to be studied from two aspects, tangible and intangible practice, respectively. Tangible practice refers to physical artefacts produced, maintained and transmitted intergenerationally in a society, while intangible practice indicates the representations, expressions, knowledge, skills as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces.


The papers in this session explores the heritage of the petroleum era from two aspects: physical spaces of production and reproduction (tangible practice) and knowledge, meaning, ideology of oil, lived everyday experience of inhabitants and artist (intangible practice), identifying different spatial layers and social-cultural types that combine into a palimpsestic petroleumscape (Hein, 2017). This panel analyses and compares globally the complex petroleum heritage through the lens of petroleumscape, specifically, the US, Iran and China. Not only connecting with the previous ‘Global Petroleumscape’ panels in the 2018 Yokohama conference, but more importantly, this panel pushes forward the research under the framework of petroleumscape to a new paragraph.



Paper 1:

Petroleumscapes as Waterscapes along the Urban Texas Coast

Alan Lessoff, University Professor of History, Illinois State University

This paper examines one of the truly significant examples of the engineering of a coastal environment into a comprehensive petroleumscape. The Texas coast from Beaumont-Port Arthur, through Houston, and south to Corpus Christi took shape during the twentieth century as a region that integrated every aspect of oil-and-gas from exploration and extraction through refining, petrochemical manufacture, natural gas pipelines, and intercontinental tanker traffic. Creation of Texas’s coastal petroleumscape entailed the range of modern coastal engineering for commerce and industry, from offshore rigs and massive offshore tanker facilities through the elaborate deep-water ship channels at Houston and Corpus Christi. All of this occurred on a low-lying, flood-prone coastal plain, vulnerable to Gulf of Mexico hurricanes, with a southern portion inclined toward aridity. These realities show up in seawalls, breakwaters, drainage systems, and the manipulation of stream beds and wetlands. Petroleum-driven urbanization, in addition, created a demand for fresh water that vastly exceeded accessible resources, resulting in a far-flung network of pipelines, aqueducts, dams, reservoirs, and filtration plants. Urbanization at the same time fostered a critical mass of support for waterfront housing, coastal recreation, and wetlands and wilderness protection that co-existed uncomfortably with the petroleum economy that had brought people and wealth to the region in the first place. Recent hurricanes, most ominously Harvey in 2017, dramatize the extent to which Texas’s petroleumscape as waterscape might have been self-annihilating from the start. Still, this region is so intertwined with petrochemicals that a future beyond paleotechnology is hard to imagine there.



Paper 2:

Informal colonial landownership as a driver for spatial transformation in Ahwaz

Rose Sarkhosh, Ph.D. Candidate, Chair History of Architecture and Urban Planning, TU Delft


Informal colonial practices for the extraction, transformation and transport of oil in Ahwaz, the capital of Iranian oil fields, were closely linked to questions of landownership at the beginning of the twentieth century. The city had a complicated ownership concerns in its cross-cultural hybridity among local proprietors, British oil explorers and national government as the owners of oil resources. Landowners as the main decision makers built urban areas in colonial Ahwaz, in complex and often contradictory ways. They represented the socio-cultural worlds of both colonizers and colonized citizens. Rapid increase in the values of the oil properties and changes in ownerships’ from local elites to the international and national oil related agents are closely connected to political, industrial, commercial, social and cultural development.

The perspective of landownership transformations as engaged and mediated by modern oil actors, has not yet received adequate attention notably in regard to its impact on built heritage. This paper tracks the initial history of the relations between the oil and the spatial development of oil over the lands and the owners of the lands and their property rights. It explores their impact through the host of new building types, architectural styles, urban forms, social functions and the resulted cultural behaviours.  Land ownership was the most concrete and explicit tools for indigenous actors to maintain traditional practices and for the British oil agents for modernization and industrialization. Exploring original archives of the oil companies, the evidence on oil contracts and concessions, ownerships and evidences of built legacies of oil in Ahwaz, this paper provides documents the waves of landownership changes on cities’ colonial-modern space renovations.

Scrutinising the dominant British oil involvement in local territories of Iran, an independent country, leads us to a vital chapter of British informal colonialism and Imperialism which was not merely to develop for oil. It also shows how oil company’s public representations -as a new solid landowner- served to construct a socio-political image.

Paper 3:

Ideology versus Livelihood: the urban transformation of Daqing through Chinese architectural and urban planning journals in China

Penglin Zhu, Ph.D. Candidate, Chair History of Architecture and Urban Planning, TU Delft

Architecture and urban planning journals are platforms of sharing knowledge, instigating discussions, and even promoting political ideology. Taking the example of the records of the ‘Industry, learning from Daqing’ movement on the main Chinese architecture and urban planning journals, the paper explores the role of these academic journals on planning in three periods, the 1960s-70s, the 1980s-90s, and after the 1990s.

Before the 1980s, the urban planning of Daqing was first a tool to realize the nationally economic objective of oil-independence, then a vehicle for the Communist Party of China (CPC) to propagandize the ideology of hard work and plain living. As the first petroleum industry city planned and built entirely by the CPC in the early 1960s, Daqing was the best paradigm for the central government to present their ideal spatial practices in China. In 1964, the central government thus created the movement of ‘Industry, learning from Daqing’ (LFD) to promote simple architectural composition and low-cost building. As imposed by the national government, such a movement did not encounter any interference from the magazines. But, soon after the Chinese economic reform of the late 1970s, these magazines started to publish a few papers from the prominent Chinese urban scholars which interpreted the LFD movement in a diametrically opposing way. The magazines attempted to illuminate the sceptical views from urban planners and architects. Moreover, after the 1990s, these magazines rarely discussed the urban development of Daqing though there was a significant improvement in the built environment.

The paper looks at the manner in which these academic magazines have reported the LFD movement. It analyses how and in which manner these academic magazines have been sceptical to the architectural movement imposed by the government in the three periods. The paper explores whether and to what extend the main Chinese architecture and urban planning magazines have experienced a de-politicisation process?

This paper presents the planning history of a petroleum industry city in view of its spatial representations. It is a research outcome from the ongoing research under the framework of the global palimpsest petroleumscape, which proposed by Carola Hein, professor of history of architecture and urban planning at TU Delft.


Paper 4:

Thomas van den Brink, “Getting lost or hiding in plain sight? The curious absence of gas stations on (road) maps, and the desire for their landscape invisibility

Since TomTom and Google Maps, we are used to the fact that information on gas stations is readily and dynamically available. From this current day experience, and because of the necessity of fuel for car transport, it might seem strange that this cartographic information historically is quite a novelty. For example, in the Netherlands, on topographic maps (scale 1:25.000), they first show up along highways from the 1970 onwards, and at a moment these stations were actually built.

Oddly enough, even on road maps authorized and published by oil companies from the early twentieth century onwards, depicting gas stations seems to be an exception. This occurred despite the fact that we know that they were very common. Moreover, their absence is not something specific for one country or company, but seems to be an international phenomenon. This said, there are examples of maps and atlases that indicate gas stations.

Based on a broad and in-depth inventory of old maps from several European countries between 1900 and today, this paper, therefore, tries to answer the question under which circumstances maps showed gas stations. In doing so, it tests several interdisciplinary hypotheses, such as: there were just too many to show on a map, or they were everywhere, as a consequence of which it was completely unnecessary to map them.

Besides explaining this cartographic oddity, the paper also shows the ways in which this intangible - perceived - space is connected with the tangible spaces of gas stations. Especially since these road maps emerged at a moment at which gas stations were designed, planned and build in urban as well as rural areas.

However, in some countries, heritage and tourist organisations were concerned about the ugliness and locations of these facilities in what they perceived as vulnerable landscapes. As such, the absences of gas stations on maps was mirrored by a desire of a certain degree of invisibility of gas stations in the actual landscape.

Hence, this paper contributes to the understanding of how the outcome of planning gas stations, in particular their locations and designs, was influenced by their tangible as well as their intangible images.