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Appropriation of Residual Spaces

Understanding the residual spaces as an important urban entity. Understanding the contribution of residual spaces in urbanisation.

Urban managers of all kinds (architects, property developers, police, commercial interests, building owners) dictate the social character of public spaces. Yet even as urban activities and identities have become increasingly prescribed, controlled and homogenized, there still exist any spaces in the city that are unpredictable and which people use in ways that transgress the purposes intended by designers and regulators. Viewing the city as a living and changing organism the study explores the appropriation of residual spaces inside the city. The city continuously rearranges itself: it can expand or shrink according to the flow of people across borders.1 Residual spaces are evolved inside a city due to three principal factorsThe formal planning and its constrains Natural features acting as separators or barriers. The non functional spaces created in the city due to various reasons. The research intends to explore the transformation process of residual spaces that usually take place outside the constrains of formal planning. Contents: 1. Residual spaces and appropriation as a process a. Concept and types of residual spaces b. Different stake holders of residual spaces c. Appropriation as a urban process 2. Residual Spaces and right to the city. a. Right of the inhabitants and right of the government b. Inequity in priority of the Government c. The scenario in Delhi

Instant Cities by Alexander Mc Spadden

3. The notion of residual space as a place: Role compared to formal public spaces. a. Appropriation and production of non formal places and it uses b. Residual spaces as a part of city life c. Residual spaces and formal spaces d. The scenario in Delhi

Residual Spaces and right to the city

Book: Searching for the Just City Debates in Urban theory and practice Edited by Peter Marcuse If todays cities are full of injustices and unrealized promises, how would a just city function? Is a just city merely a utopia? Is it the best formulation of the most desirable goal for urban development? The book tries to have philosophical discussions on Just city and the urban characteristics which talk about inequality, insecurity and exploitation. The city is scale large enough for a government to have meaningful power, but still small enough for a democracy in which people can actually affect politics. The author talks about how the justice can be formulated for the right of urban space. He gives the idea about right to global city which encompasses a right both to appropriate urban space and to produce it through participation in decision making at all scales that affect the inhabitant. The problem: global restructuring and declining enfranchisement in cities The author tries to identify the problem in decision making in planning in cities and why right to city is needed? Governance is being reconfigured in three main ways: (1) it is being rescaled, (2) policy is being reoriented away from redistribution and toward competition, and (3) many state functions are being transferred to non-state and quasi-state bodies. The three changes have provoked concern that urban inhabitants are becoming increasingly disenfranchised, specifically with respect to the control they exert over the decisions that shape the geography of the city.

The solution: Right to the city?

The book takes inspiration from Henry Lefebvres work in understanding the justice in appropriation of spaces. Lefebvre imagined the city as a social and spatial entity. He advocates that the right to appropriation not only means to be physically present there but the city should meet all the needs of the inhabitants too. Appropriation demands the right to be present in space, but it also requires the production of spaces that actively foster a dignified and meaningful life. Lefebvre reorients the decision making for the state to production of urban space. The power of decision making should be in the hands of urban inhabitants than from the capital and state. Producing space for Lefebvre, necessarily involves reproducing the social relationships bound to it. Space production is not only about the space design or planning aspects, its essentially producing and reproducing all aspects of urban life. He argues that the right to the city should modify, concretize and make more practical the rights of the citizen as an urban dweller (citadin) and user of multiple services. It would affirm, on the one hand, the right of users to make known their ideas on the space and time of their activities in the urban area ;it would also cover the right to the use of the center, a privileged place, instead of being dispersed and stuck into ghettos (for workers, immigrants, the marginal and even for the privileged) Lefebvre gives some idea of what he sees as the agenda of citadins in making decisions that produce urban space. That agenda is embedded in the second aspect of the right to the city, the right to appropriation. Appropriation includes the right of inhabitants to physically access, occupy, and use urban space, and so this notion has been the primary focus of those who advocate the right of people to be physically present in the space of the city. However, Lefebvre imagines appropriation to have a much broader and more structural meaning. Not only is appropriation the right to occupy already-produced urban space, it is also the right to produce urban space so that it meets the needs of inhabitants. Because appropriation gives inhabitants the right to full and complete usage of urban space in the course of everyday life space must be produced in a way that makes that full and complete usage possible. The use value aspect of urban space must therefore be the primary consideration in decisions that produce urban space. The conception of urban space as private property, as a commodity to be valorized (or used to valorize other commodities) by the capitalist production process, is specifically what the right to appropriation stands against.

Suggestion by the author The need for greater democracy in cities is clear, and it is almost as clear that the recent round of global restructuring has made this need more acute. The growing amount of attention to the right to the city seems to suggest that there is something there, that it can offer real solutions to the problems of enfranchisement in cities.