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Limits of architecture in the context of generic city: Ankara, Söğütözü district

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2019
Bakkaloğlu, Hülya
A new type of city, which is theorized by Rem Koolhaas as Generic City dominates the contemporary urbanism discourse. Under the rapid alterations with unstable conditions and complex forces of globalization, the city is exposed to a kind of spontaneous, fragmented urbanism that invalidates all the previous systems and generates unordinary planning mechanisms with a pragmatist approach. Buildings are evaluated as isolated objects and relationship between them and urban spaces is underestimated. As a result cities are becoming to accumulate unlivable spaces with low standards and quality. Architecture is one of the stakeholders that contribute to this urbanism and the aim of the study is, question limits of architecture, over the case of Ankara Söğütözü District. The district has undergone a transformation over the last three decades with the idea of becoming a new central business district (CBD) and the study argues that CBD is an outcome of “Generic City” with the aim of its nascence and its configuration and presents an undiluted layout. After presenting the urban theories of Koolhaas, focusing the area and investigating attitudes of architects whose buildings are located in the district give clues for finding new ways in order to construct more livable cities.