Home' Commercial : Commercial 2014 Contents 142 SCOOP Commercial Building & Design
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In the past, planners have traditionally segregated
different uses into separate zones. The effect of
this grouping is a stratification of communities,
where people work, live, manufacture, and play,
with little opportunity for cross-pollination. The
residential area is segregated from the commercial
hub; the manufacturing zone is distant from the
entertainment district; the retail precinct is separate
from the convention and exhibition node; and so
on. But this can discourage diversity, it can stifle
Saint Asaph St
The Christchurch Blueprint reimagines the CBD.
The redeveloped Cathedral Square in the heart of Christchurch is
one of a number of anchor projects proposed.
PIXELATED CITIES, CHRISTCHURCH
Mark Mitcheson-Low, Woods Bagot
innovation, it can stagnate progression, and it can
de-activate the ground plane.
So, instead of stratifying, Woods Bagot has
found more success in pixelating. Woods Bagot has
studied the most liveable cities around the world –
the most competitive, innovative and interesting
– and observed that they have developed
consistently over time without the rigidity of
planning segregation. These cities pixelate uses at
the street level (horizontally) and above street level
(vertically). This allows activation, excitement and
socialisation – the types of characteristics that
enable a museum to be stumbled upon rather than
having to travel to a designated cultural precinct.
Woods Bagot is constantly striving to
understand the mechanisms that make a city
great, and is currently involved in discussions
with Columbia University for involvement in such
a global programme. As one example, following
the devastating earthquakes in Christchurch in
2010 and 2011, Woods Bagot worked closely with
a number of design firms as part of the Blueprint
100 Consortium to create a masterplan strategy
to rebuild and regenerate the Christchurch CBD.
Woods Bagot was a key member of the Blueprint
100 Consortium that also included Boffa Miskell,
RCP, Warren and Mahoney, and Populous.
The focus of the Christchurch Blueprint 100
was to produce a long-term vision on the recovery
of the heart of the city and region, as well as on
addressing pre-existing issues evident within
central Christchurch prior to the earthquakes.
A city is not made great through its building
fabric and aesthetics alone – but through the
pixelation of uses that encourages diversity, spurs
innovation, promotes progression, and activates
the city as exciting and liveable 24 hours a day.
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