Motionscape The Image of Space in Motion An Attempt at Conceptualization in the Case of Ankara

While earlier modernized cities experienced a drastic speed-based development period and entered a new phase of "soft" transformations at the end of the 20th century, developing countries are currently in a radical reconstruction process, adapting their existing urban settings to a "new" condition of speed-based automobility. Ankara, as the capital of Turkey, exemplifies a typical "developing" version of late-modernist urbanism in relation to its current policies on urban mobility. At the points in the existing network where bottlenecks appeared, a series of transport infrastructure projects was recently realized in the form of new underpasses and grade-separate road junctions. The scale of such urban "surgeries" or "operations" on the existing urban body reveals the need for a systematic approach in design research to determine the changing mode of "motionscape," an essential indicator of urban vitality. In addition to the discussion of the emerging fragmentation of urban space, which is the perceptible result of this process, this paper intends to clarify, the changing pattern of the perception of urban space, which represents the implicit externality of this transformation. Introducing the idea of motionscape as the image of the mobility space, this paper aims to further develop early models of the perceptual analyses of urban mobility. Using an impact analysis based on the concepts of imageability/legibility, visual continuity, and meaning, the paper examines the real consequences of speed-based transport operations in the case of Ankara. After a three-phase model analysis of speed pattern, depth of field, and nodes and landmarks, the perceptual transformation and its negative effects on meaning (spatial identity) are discussed. Finally, while a possible planning and design approach for late-modern cities is discussed in terms of speed, perception, and space, the criticality of a visual encoding of the city for urban politics is emphasized.

Citation Formats
O. Çalışkan, “Motionscape The Image of Space in Motion An Attempt at Conceptualization in the Case of Ankara,” Journal Of Architectural And Planning Research, vol. 28, pp. 314–335, 2011, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: