Architectural and urban atmospheres: shaping the way we walk in town

Abstract : This contribution contains the results of research funded by France's National Research Agency (ANR) on walking in towns. Research focussed on two cities: Geneva (Switzerland) and Grenoble (France). Starting from a simple question - what prompts us to walk in town? - and an innovative methodological protocol we call the three-person walk - the author queries the implicit relations between the act of walking and atmospheres. How and to what extent do architectural and urban atmospheres affect our decisions when walking in town and influence a pedestrian's gait? By constituting two lexicons - one describing sensory configurations that are more or less favourable to walking, the other describing the types of relation possible between pedestrians and the city - the author makes two contributions to the debate on urban walking: first that there are many ways of walking; and secondly that we adapt our gait to suit - it is perhaps even shaped by - architectural and urban atmospheres.
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Contributor : Rachel Thomas <>
Submitted on : Monday, May 30, 2011 - 1:48:10 PM
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Rachel Thomas. Architectural and urban atmospheres: shaping the way we walk in town. Methorst, Rod, and Monterde i Bort, Hector and Risser, Ralf and Sauter, Daniel andTight, Miles and Walker, Jim. Pedestrians' Quality Needs Final Report : Part C : Executive Summary, Walk21, 54-68 p., 2010. ⟨halshs-00596763⟩

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