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Mobility and the role of pedestrian in making public space: Mersin Coastal Park

Belge, Züleyha Sara
Public space, being an inevitable component of cities, is an evolving space that transforms, expands or shrinks. Public spaces of cities, in general, constitute squares and streets that are open to the use of the whole society freely. Recreative areas, parks, coastal areas, most of the open spaces and public buildings, such as schools, administrative centres, are also other forms of public spaces. Over the last four decades, private or quasi-private public spaces, like shopping malls, and the privatization of public spaces have been discussed by scholars from different fields of social sciences, too. In any time, planning and designing of public space is a fundamental topic in urban planning and design literature. However, are all public spaces effectively accessed and used by everyone in terms of their ownership or inclusivity? Specifically, what are the roles of the pedestrians and their accessibility for making genuine public spaces? This Ph.D. thesis focuses on the role of pedestrian movement and mobility in making public space in the fields of planning and urban design. It investigates the accessibility qualities of public urban spaces by proposing a model allows that comparative analysis of inner and outer factors of mobility and pedestrian behaviour. This model is a unique approach for public space in terms of pedestrian movement. Thus, it is possible to spatially evaluate the potential and possibilities in making public space. As the case study, it examines the coastal park is one of the best examples in Mersin to discuss the role of pedestrian movement and mobility in terms of planning and urban design affecting making public space. The coastal park which has been transformed and evolved since the beginning of the 20th century by coastal the coastal park in the same context are efficiently used, some other zones could not be but is used or ignored by pedestrians. Therefore, this research shows how accessibility qualities affect public space-making and how the mobility capacity of pedestrians is crucial in creating genuine liveable and sustainable public spaces.