Integrating Open Space in Compact Layout: Study of a High-Density Residential Development in Hong Kong
In response to several urban problems such as demand of higher development density, traffic congestion, accessibility in urban core, design of compact urban layout has been adopted as a popular urban development option in many large cities. In the compact layout provision of local open space is crucial for the quality of life of the people living in extreme high-density built environment. The vertically distributed mixed land uses are accompanied with local open spaces at different levels to offer active and passive recreation, and social interaction spaces for the communities. In many instances the provision of multilevel open space-layout has been criticized for being too complex to access and to use. But whether the provision of open spaces in the overall spatial layout can itself be given some explicit description and be subjected to functional formulation is a problem which has been hardly tackled by architectural research. Using a computer-based technique known as “space syntax” this study investigates the spatial configuration of a high-density mixed use residential development to understand its relation to the patterns of open space use. Findings of the study suggest that, notwithstanding the effect of grade separated multilevel circulation spatial configuration has significant effect on the patterns of open space use in high-density compact built environment.