Strategies for diversity: the consideration of marginal elements for integration into the city

Australia Victoria

This document includes four projects carried out within the Urban Architecture Laboratory (UAL) over a period of one and a half years to fulfil the requirements of a Master of Architecture by research at the RMIT University.

This candidature developed through the initial study of Fishermans Bend as a particular form of homogenous, ‘flat urbanism’ in the city of Melbourne. The architecture largely consists of big box industrial warehouses of the same height and scale with little diversity of use or occupation.

The aim of this research is to alter this flat condition through the inclusion of marginalised programs, building types and uses. Understanding the city as existing in a constant state of flux, exclusion of marginalised elements can be seen to reinforce the homogeneity of a city, and the inclusion of these elements to encourage diversity.

‘Strategies for Diversity’ describes procedures, enacted through architectural design projects, for the re-integration of qualities and programs normally resisted in exclusive, uniform environments.

‘Strategies for Diversity’ establishes how designers can treat peripheral program types not normally given precedence in complete or central urban areas, but which are significant in the creation of a programmatically and demographically integrated city.

These procedures work in opposition to the wholesale demolition of areas for redevelopment which leads to singular demographic environments and to monotonous forms of urbanism.
Rather a series of alteration and insertion strategies have been formulated at the micro level that are targeted towards a macro level impact.

Insertions and alterations are intended to act as catalysts to mediate change between different activities and to spark difference in the place of homogeneity.

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