Stadens morfologi som kulturarv
Disciplines associated with history and conservation have traditionally been used to evaluate heritage values in the built environment. Although general problems of development in the urban environment are not addressed directly by this approach, there is a background to be found in the goals of official cultural policy; this indicates the need for new and complementary analytical methods. In this thesis three analytical methods in urban morphology are evaluated, in a comparison with methods from the traditional conservation field.
The examination is carried out as a case study on two levels. Emphasis is laid on three analytical perspectives from urban morphological research, chosen for their unique attributes. The empirical object, the Swedish town of Uddevalla, is a substantive case chosen as a reference and for its capacity to shed light on the specific qualities of the contrasting methods.
The main questions deal with both substantial and instrumental characteristics of the methods. What are the specific contributions of the morphological methods in comparison with the traditional analytical methods of integrated conservation? What is shown by the conservation perspective that is disregarded in the morphological methods? To what extent can the morphological analysis chosen provide direction or foundation for design guidelines or recommendations? Are these methods appropriate to describe not only traditional urban form, but also modern suburban areas with non-traditional structures?
The three analytical methods are divided into separate instrumental links working in two contrasting phases, though following a common order. The capacity to provide guidelines is affected by implicit attributes of the morphological methodologies. Important characteristics are the presence of a normative theory, a specific conceptual assumption, the narrowness of the perspective or the intention to present a basis for an analogue design process.
This study revealed that a pluralistic combination of several methods is useful. When several perspectives are used in this complementary way, they may also be used in a non-normative way, as explanatory positive theory. This multiple perspective can be a way to develop the morphological instrument as a tool also for conservation to handle both traditional urban form and current challenges in modern suburban areas.