Horizontal Metropolis

October 12 – December 2, 2015


October 12, 2015
Inaugural lecture

Catherine Maumi, ENSA Grenoble
Sébastien Marot,
Introduction by Paola Viganò, EPFL, Iuav Venise

October 12, 13 & 14,  2015
SwissTech Convention Center, EPFL

Spatial and Natural Capital: The Metropolis of the past, the big concentrated city – as found in London or Paris, for example – is only one of the urban forms we can read inside the European megalopolis which inspired Jean Gottmann and his interpretation of the American city. Other types of urbanity have emerged which can be analyzed and compared starting from their measures and modules, which are often the expression of deeply embedded rationalities related, for instance, to water management and accessibility.

A Transcultural Tradition: The project for a horizontal metropolis has come to the fore at different times throughout the history of city and territorial design: Rousseau, Kropotkin, Geddes, Mackaye, Wright, Gottmann and later Friedmann, McGee, Indovina, Secchi, Branzi, Sieverts, Corboz, Oswald and Baccini have all described different types of urbanity. A series of original interviews, lectures and texts from an array of contributing authors will be featured.

Issues and Challenges of a New Urban Ecology: In recent decades the city-territory has started to become a recognised and explicit object of policies and design: this is evident in academic research, but also in other contexts where an awareness of this spatial, economic and social configuration is more mature. A part of the research will critically reflect on the radical nature of the changes underway and the emergence of new paradigms. Although Broadacre City is not the only reference it still remains one of the most important examples.

The Exhibition features five large models representing an area of 3,2km x 3,2km at 1:880 scale – the same as the original Broadacre City model, in order to showcase some recent case studies: Switzerland, both the plateau in Lausanne and the alpine territory of Valais (la ville territoire), Veneto region (Città diffusa), Boston metropolitan area (megalopolis), and the Chinese example of Tangqi (Desakota).

Exhibition produced in collaboration with Lab-U.
Professor Paola Viganò
Research team and organization :
Farzaneh Bahrami, Martina Barcelloni Corte, Chiara Cavalieri, Marine Durand, Tommaso Pietropolli, Roberto Sega, Matthew Skjonsberg, Antoine Vialle

Exhibition views