baitasi in layers



Year: 2015
Size: 60 ha
Type: research
Status: /
Location: Beijing, China

Partners in charge: Nicola Saladino, Chen Chen
Design team: Liqun Zhao, Yufeng Zhai, Ruilin Yang, Miguel Esteban Alonso, Miguel Acebron Garcia de Eulate



Like many other hutong areas, Baitasi structure has been radically transformed in the last fifty years, with an uncontrolled densification of the original urban fabric. The traditional courtyard houses have been fragmented into separate living units and the open spaces have been saturated by informal extensions.

These physical transformations have deeply altered the functionality of the neighborhood. In the small scale, the resulting built fabric has very poor conditions of natural light and ventilation; in the larger picture, the amount of public space per inhabitant has drastically dropped, forcing a new relationship between the courtyards and the streets, with the creation of new façade typologies (e.g. the insertion of commercial interfaces) and new functional patterns of occupation during the day (entire street sections are used as parking areas during certain hours or as extensions of restaurants and commercial activities during others).

Starting from a very simple cartography of Baitasi, through the use of computational tools we dag into the layers of information that constitute the core of the site, highlighting problems and spotting out potential areas of intervention. An animation on a TV screen works as a legend, explaining step-by-step the different principles used for the analysis while the results are projected on a physical model of the area. In Baitasi in Layers we explore the morphology and natural conditions of the site, the evolution of its built structure, through the simulation of the movements of the local population and visitors we evaluate the efficiency of the road network and the public transportation system, we evaluate functional intensities in different times of the day, etc.

Our research originates from the understanding that an urban neighborhood is a system in which multiple physical, social and economic variables interact, through complex relationships, creating a series of hidden forces that will influence also its evolution in time. Thus our analysis not only provides a starting point to better understand the context in which urban designers operate, but also potentially offers a constantly updating analytical feedback loop for future interventions.

与很多其他的胡同街区相似,白塔寺原本的城市肌理在过去的五十年中经历了彻底的改变:密度失控,大多四合院都被切分成多个生活单元而成为“大杂院”,本来就不宽裕的开放空间充斥着非正式搭建而进一步缺失。

这些物理空间的转变也为居民的生活方式带来了深刻的影响。大多数建筑结构现状破落,缺乏自然光照和通风等基本条件;人均拥有的公共开放空间大幅度减少,使得院落和街道的关系不得不被重新定义,也催生了一系列新的外墙界面类型(如商业界面的植入等)以及街道利用的一系列新方式(大多数街道空间在不同时段被用作停车空间或餐厅及商铺的外摆区等)。

我们的研究从对白塔寺地区的“描图”开始,采集基础数据,并通过对数字化工具的应用,逐渐挖掘构建白塔寺街区行为功能的一些关键性的因素,揭示不同层面之间数据的动态相关性,发现现状中的问题,以寻找街区改造更新潜在的突破口。在白色的白塔寺全景沙盘模型上我们以投影的方式呈现多层数据分析的过程与结果,一侧的屏幕中是一组“动态图例”,它们解释了我们本次研究的基本逻辑与准则。“多层白塔寺”不仅对场地物质空间所决定的自然条件(日照,坡度等)与其发展建设的历史沿革展开分析,同时通过模拟当地居民及外来游客的活动,对其道路交通网络,公共交通设施等进行了综合性的评价,并预测蕴含潜在商机的片区。

我们认为,城市街区是一个复杂的生态系统,其中物理的、社会的和经济的等多层因素不断互动,其间并不显而易见的关系正是决定场地当下运行和未来发展的关键信息。因而,我们的研究不仅致力于为城市更新提供一个扎实全面的场地现状分析和解读,更可为未来潜在的设计方案提供了一个动态更新的评价体系。