Design Performance in Planning for Densification - The Case of Oslo

Gordana Zurovac


This article addresses design performance in transformation of urban tissue under densification policy. It is an embedded case study of Oslos built-up area, within which three sub-cases of multi-family residential projects have been selected for a detailed analysis based on the features of their physical form and planning instruments applied in their planning processes. The focus is on the zoning stage, where strategies are translated into built form. Through interviews with public planners who were in charge of this planning stage and analysis of planning documents, the article examines the aspects of planning strategies for built form, design of built and open spaces in different kinds of pre-existing tissue, and actors involvement. The main findings are that there is no strategy for built form at the spatial scale of such individual projects (intermediate scale) except in land-use transformation areas, and that built outcomes are greatly conditioned by the plot and the pre-existing tissue, besides architects and public planners skills and goals. Certain propositions are given for improvement of planning approaches through a closer connection between planning and architecture.

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