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“The people who design the streets in Hong Kong ignore the need for seating areas, so people in the neighborhood put some furniture they don’t need to good use”

Everything is designed according to a standard formula that doesn’t take into account the unique qualities of a given area. But in traditional urban fabric, “the configuration of space was developed gradually by people through time,” she says. “It allows [people in] the neighbourhood to express the way they want the space to be.”

One thing the pair noticed when studying abandoned furniture was the type of person who uses it: old. With the notable exception of teenagers, says Chan, young people just don’t engage with the city in the same way. “Maybe they like staying at home because they pay all their salary towards it,” she says. “I’m like an old guy — I like to take a newspaper or some food and enjoy the wind and air.”

via CNNGo

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some quotes

_ Berlin is a city where such a fragmentation can be clearly read. Not only through the inner-city emptiness, but also because of the many crashes of different realities which can be observed all over the city.

_ the city is pieced together of fragments from several historical layers.

_ After the fall of the Wall, large inner city areas lay empty, and a heated public debate arose on possible future developments and strategies; hence how the future stories of the city could be told.

_ Oswalt continues to claim that what is missing can never be replaced by something which simulates history, and that these buildings do therefore not create the desired homogeneous image. Rather, they add yet another dimension to the conglomerate city.

”Die Simulation können das Fehlende nicht ersetzen, sondern nur  auf das Vermisste verweisen. So wird in Berlin die Heterogenität der Stadt, die eigentlich kaschiert werden soll, um eine weitere Dimension bereichert” (Oswalt)

_ new projects have “failed to project an image that Berliners could recognise” (Bisky 2006).

_ Berlin is a conglomeration of parallel worlds.

_ urban development projects initiated by the planning authorities in Berlin after the reunification do not correspond with people’s perception of the realities of the city (…) “crashes of realities”

_ Temporary use has even turned out to be “an important component of urban planning in Berlin” (Overmeyer 2007).

_ A void so filled with history and memories would lie as a reminder, telling the story of the city with its emptiness.

_ Thus, in an empty space it was easier for him to recall his memories and reconstruct the former platz in his imagination (Casu and Steingut 2006). Wenders continues with comparing the function of empty and open spaces in a city to reading between the lines in a text: “…the empty spaces in the cities work like that as well. They encourage us to fill them up with ourselves” (ibid). Perhaps this points out the most crucial quality of empty space, that it is a space of opportunities, of future stories. Thus, these places trigger our imagination; encourage us to add our own stories to the city. Because where nothing exists, everything is possible.

„Wo nichts ist, ist alles vorstellbar.” Phillip Oswalt

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