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Ethical Imageability

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Zoe Zachary1 Comment

Why does it matter that an urban landscape is “psychologically satisfying?” I’m only thinking about this question because I’m convinced that it does matter. A city’s legibility is suspiciously correlated with its affluence. Lynch uses Boston for its exemplary landmarks, paths, and edges. The Charles River is a naturally strong boundary. The gold dome of the State House is highly …

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Identifying A Church In Corona, Queens

In City Form, New York City, A Sense of Place by Amy1 Comment

Lynch’s Image of the City accurately describes the differences between our cognitive maps and the geographic maps that help us navigate city streets. Our cognitive maps evolve from the experiences we have with space, but geographic maps rarely tell stories. Although there are stark differences between a cognitive and geographic map, they can also inform each other to help make …

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How we Direct Ourselves

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Henry Choa1 Comment

A thing is experienced “in relation to its surroundings,” says Kevin Lynch in “The Image of the City.” I drew a shoddy cognitive map of the area (or perhaps district) encompassing my mom’s house in London, and after comparing it with a real map, found Lynch’s assertion to be accurate. The first thing I noticed upon completion was my choice to place …

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Dis / orienting

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Parissah Lin1 Comment

I was always particularly terrible at whatever form of cognitive skill it took to transform the four dimensional experience of moving through a space into the two dimensional format of a map. My Mother isn’t very good at it either; the general rule is to go in the opposite direction of whatever she thinks is right. I’ve mostly been relatively …

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Where is Little Italy

In City Form, New York City, A Sense of Place by Prof1 Comment

About a year ago I was approached by a group of tourists, armed with a map of whose effective I question, who posited a question that I found myself struggling to answer. Though not from New York, I have a very developed sense of direction, as do most men.  Nonetheless, I was puzzled when the couple asked me where in …

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An Ever-changing Mental Map

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Lindsey Chan1 Comment

Kevin Lynch writes in The Image of the City about the highly imageable city and how people perceive cities through elements such as paths, edges, landmarks, nodes and regions. Through these elements, people are able to create individual mental maps and create their own visual memory of their surroundings. Lynch mentions that becoming “completely lost is perhaps a rather rare …

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A Matter of Perspective

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Jaisal Kapoor1 Comment

In Kevin Lynch’s book The Image of the City, he mentions numerous ways and techniques that individuals use in order to read a city and orient themselves. Various structures present throughout the urban landscape serve as landmarks that help people navigate and find their way from one place to another. By depending on the saliency of these structures and the …

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Helpful Distortions

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Jacob Ford1 Comment

The ancients* have long chanted that topological faithfulness is next to godliness, but they are wrong, and they can never be trusted to give simple directions to dinner parties. Accuracy is the enemy of wayfinding. The human brain distorts in order to comprehend. This is no act of laziness, but in fact a rather efficient method of compression. Kevin Lynch, in the very book where he coined …

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City Collage

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Maia Smillie1 Comment

Kevin Lynch states that, the need to familiarize us with our surroundings is, “fundamental to the efficiency and to the very survival of free-moving life” (page 3). It was interesting to see the relevance of the visual in the text, to the ability to familiarize with a space, in either immediate surroundings, or through memories of a place. The idea …

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A Landmark is All You Need

In City Form, A Sense of Place by Astrid Da Silva1 Comment

Although New York City can be a nightmare of confusion for any newcomer, it doesn’t take long to get adjusted to the legibility of the city. The grid-like structure allows the area to be easy to map out mentally, the vivid details of each neighborhood aid in imageability, and the ever changing storefronts and diverse characters leave room for the …