THE PLAN Journal (TPJ) intends to disseminate and promote innovative, thought-provoking and relevant research, studies and criticism in architecture and urbanism. The criteria for selecting contributions will be innovation, clarity of purpose and method, and potential transformational impact on disciplinary fields or the broader socio-cultural context. The ultimate purpose of the TPJ is to enrich the dialog between research and professional fields, in order to encourage both applicable new knowledge and intellectually driven modes of practice. (Maurizio Sabini)


 Open Access
Book Review

"Modern and the Site Specific: The Architecture of Gino Valle 1945-2003"

by: Kenneth Frampton VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , doi: 10.15274/tpj.2019.04.01.16, published: 2019-07-16




Modern and the Site Specific:      

The Architecture of Gino Valle 1945-2003

By Pierre-Alain Croset and Luka Skansi

London: Lund Humphries, 2018

250 × 190 mm 

100 b/w and 150 color illustrations 

352 pages

£50.00 GBP (hardcover)

ISBN: 978-1848222779  


 Subscribers only

Digital Line: Architecture’s Expanding Thread

by: Johan Voordouw VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , doi: 10.15274/tpj.2019.04.01.11, published: 2019-06-27

This article studies the changing role of line in architecture. The paper argues that digital production has led to a subsequent shift of lines as trace, towards lines as “spatialized” thread. This thread is moving away from orthographic and perspective modes of representation through three embedded modes of conception: the digital model, diagram and notation. These new lines have a long and alternative lineage in architectural ideation. The paper explains each mode in turn, indicating the importance of the model as a line in space embedded since the very inception of western architectural discourse; the edifying role of the diagram as a line of operation clarifying architectural ideas; and the new material ground that links notation to fabrication, and continued actualization in the pursuit of new architectural ideas. By expanding the line in architecture, the digital line better connects emerging representational modes to established architectural thinking and opens new ground to further representational discourse. 

 Subscribers only

Politicized Gentrification: The New Urban Renewal Movement in Beijing

by: Wei (Windy) Zhao VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , doi: 10.15274/tpj.2019.04.01.10, published: 2019-06-27

In April 2017, the Beijing municipal government enacted a new, three-year urban renewal policy that is aimed to restore and improve the built environment of the 2,435 alleyways located in the historic center of the city. The local implementation, however, has focused on the sealing of doors and windows that led to homes and small businesses for decades. As a result, thousands of businesses that had provided daily services to local residents have shut down, forcing many people to move to other cities. Drawing on archival research and interviews, this article argues that the Beijing municipal government is merely using urban renewal as camouflage for a politically-oriented gentrification project which not only eliminates non-permanent residents, but also deconstructs, as well as reconstructs, “place” at the local level as a means to control social activities and relationships. The result is the creation of a new image of the capital of China, which exhibits the ideas of regularity, singularity, segregation, and authoritarianism. 

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Reconfronting Sprawl: Still Paved with Good Intentions as Well as Asphalt

by: Doug Kelbaugh VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , doi: 0.15274/tpj.2019.04.01.8, published: 2019-06-06

This paper, based on the author’s new book The Urban Fix: Resilient Cities in the War against Climate Change, Heat Islands and Overpopulation (2019), culminates over three decades of researching, teaching, and writing on American sprawl. One of the country’s biggest and most familiar problems, it could be described as a conspiracy of good intentions: short-sighted desires to live in nature; traffic safety engineers’ preference for wide thoroughfares; fire marshals’ desire to turn around hook-and-ladder trucks at the end of every cul-de-sac, etc. Over half of American homes are single-family dwellings – 69 million out of a total of 132 million. The fatal flaw is that these positive intentions quickly led to very high energy/carbon/ecological footprints per suburbanite – a challenge that is difficult because of extensive, indelible infrastructure. Densifying arterial strips, inserting transit, redeveloping a walkable, bikeable, mixed-use, and human-scaled urbanity is as urgent as it is essential in the nation’s effort to combat climate change.

 Open Access
Conference Report

"Ando and Le Corbusier: Masters of Architecture" Symposium

by: Eric Mumford VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , Pages: 1 - 4 doi: doi: 10.15274/tpj.2019.04.01.4, published: 2019-03-04
 Open Access

Permitting a Homeless Transition Village: Transactions between the Informal and the Formal

by: Stephen Luoni VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , doi: 10.15274/tpj.2019.04.01.9, published: 2019-06-07

More than three million Americans experience homelessness annually. Emergency shelter capacity is limited while local governments are unable to provide even temporary housing. Informal housing involving interim self-help solutions are now popular adaptive actions for obtaining shelter, despite nonconformance with city codes. Unfortunately, most informal solutions have resulted in objectionable tent cities and squatter campgrounds where the local response has simply been to move the problem around. Our homeless transition village plan prototypes a shelter-first solution using a kit-of-parts 

that can be replicated in other communities. Village design reconciles key gaps between informal building practices and formal sector regulations, creating a permittable solution under most city codes. While informality is traditionally associated with the “topography” of unplanned hyper-growth in developing nation economies — and not with design disciplines or advanced economies— our project highlights informality as a mode for effecting new urban solutions within obdurate regulatory environments. Indeed, the informal has emerged as an important design epistemology in advanced market economies given the polarization of their economies and the need for distributive justice.

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The Restoration of the Canada Pavilion at the Venice Biennale

by: Alberico Barbiano di Belgiojoso VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , doi: 10.15274/tpj.2019.04.01.7, published: 2019-06-06

Originally, the design for the Canada Pavilion (1958) was developed by the Milan-based firm BBPR from the willingness to achieve an anti-monumental set up, referring to the teepee and translating and expressing its spirit in a modern architectural system. Our goal for the restoration (2014-18) was therefore to preserve the building with a special attention to various themes concerning restoration and, in fact, different solutions were studied for the many details to be able to respond to all institutional representatives: the Italian Superintendence for Historic Preservation, the National Gallery of Canada, the Venice Biennale and the Municipality of Venice. The relationship between nature and architecture was one of the major issues to consider.

 Open Access

New Paradigms

by: Maurizio Sabini VOLUME 3/2018 - Issue 2 [THE SHARED PROJECT], Pages: 269 - 271 doi: 10.15274/tpj.2018.03.02.11, published: 2019-02-13

 Open Access

In This Issue [1/2018]

by: Maurizio Sabini VOLUME 3/2018 - Issue 1 , Pages: 5 - 6 doi: doi: 10.15274/tpj.2018.03.01.14, published: 2018-08-02