Paper Information

Journal:   HOVIATESHAHR   SPRING-SUMMER 2011 , Volume 4 , Number 8; Page(s) 27 To 37.
 
Paper: 

THE CONCEPT OF PLACE ATTACHMENT AND ITS ELEMENTS

 
 
Author(s):  JAVAN FOROUZANDE ALI*, MOTALEBI GASEM
 
* DEPARTMENT ART AND ARCHITECTURE, ISLAMIC AZAD UNIVERSITY, SIENCE AND RESEARCH BRACH, TEHRAN, IRAN
 
Abstract: 
This paper defines an important meaning named " place attachment " and its relation to designing for environmental designers. Although many researchers and environemntal designers have studied meaning and its influence in human's daily life, place attachment and its essential elements has not been clarified in designing yet. Based on environmental meaning of model, proposed by Canter and Gustafson, place attachment is an outline of interaction between person, others and environment. This meaning has been used in environmental designing quite often.
Literature review shows the variety of terms are used in this regard that cause confusion for planners and designers with no clear understanding about. The aim of this research is to find the concept of place attachment and its factors in architecture and environmental design. According to the place model, proposed by Relph and Canter, place is the outline of interaction between physical elements, activities and meanings. So place attachment as meaning of place has direct relation to these three elements of place. In order to define this meaning, related literature was reviewed from epistomological and ontological perspective. From the epistomological one, two major viewpoints include: phenomenologist and environmental psychologist. Since place attachment is an emotional bond between person and a special place for phenomenologist, experience and human perception have main roles in this approach. Relph, as a phenomenologist, defines a dialect between inside and outside as an important element in creating place attachment. Tuan, the other phenomenologist, name this sense as "Topophila"-an emotional bond between a person and a special place. Norberg Schultz, inspired by Hussel and Heidegger's ideas, proposed the existential space as the goal of human's life and determined 3 factors of this space: Morphology, Topology and Tipology. This properties show themself in designing by physical distinction and legibility. In environmental psychology, place attachment has been studied from three perspective: cognitive approach, social approach and emotional one. Althogh most of researches concentrate on social one in this field, but the role of physical setting has been emphasized a lot. In this field, affordance of physical elements in executing the activities are important.
From ontological approach, place attachment is one of human's primary needs. This sense has two major dimensions: Physical and Social that according researches social attachment is stonger than physical one.
Findings of this paper show that place attachment is one of the most important criteria in determining human environment relationship and creating qualitative living places. Three major elements of place attachment are defined: personal attribute, social elements and physical setting. The most important finding of this paper, in architecture and environmental design, is that the properties of form (shape, dimension, color and scale) and the organization of physical elements which based on social purposes, have the main roles in creating this sense. At the end, a model of influential factors which shows the relationship and involvement of main elements of place attachment, was proposed. The conceptual and practical model of this paper could be used by designers and researchers in creating more qualitative living environments.
 
Keyword(s): PLACE ATTACHMENT, ENVIRONMENT, MEANING, PHYSICAL ATTACHMENT
 
References: 
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