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In Transit: Large-Scale Road Infrastructures Seen from Above

In Transit: Large-Scale Road Infrastructures Seen from Above

We live in a tangled web of flows – of capital, information, technology, images, structures, in constant momentum dominating all aspects of our lives. The large-scale road infrastructures shown here are products of this powerful desire for movement, which for many years was also synonymous with development, as portrayed by the famous Goethean character Faust in his endless quest for a (false) sense of progress.

From these tangles of concrete and steel, at multiple levels and in different directions, emerges a geometrically organized chaos that tears the urban fabrics in a relentless effort to prioritize the flows with the fewest obstacles and the highest capacity possible.

Houston, Texas. Created by @dailyoverview, source imagery: @nearmapNew Orleans, Louisiana. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @nearmapJacksonville, Florida. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @digitalglobeLos Angeles, California. Created by @dailyoverview, source imagery: @nearmap+ 12

Since the dissemination of automobiles as mass-market goods in the early twentieth century, the infrastructures that came along with them have revolutionized the way we move, creating a new scale within the city, and a new perception of the landscape in constant motion.

Although they are primarily engineering elements designed with a strictly speculative and economy-oriented approach, today they are no longer a symbol of urban growth and development, leading to reflections on their relationship with sustainability.

They are intertwined structures that, although fascinating in scale and proportion, are separated from their urban contexts, fragments in the built environment. This condition consolidates the stereotype of the generic city.

Within this process of standardization, we can find long and wide freeways forming concentric rings on the outskirts of big cities and huge road infrastructures, always lured by the power of movement, as seen in these pictures taken from above.

Dhahran, Saudi Arabia

Dhahran, Saudi Arabia.  Created by @dailyoverview, source imagery: @maxartechnologies
Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Created by @dailyoverview, source imagery: @maxartechnologies

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @maxartechnologies
Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @maxartechnologies

Al Rayyan, Qatar

Al Rayyan, Qatar. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @maxartechnologies
Al Rayyan, Qatar. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @maxartechnologies

Jacksonville, Florida, United States

Jacksonville, Florida. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @digitalglobe
Jacksonville, Florida. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @digitalglobe

Shanghai, China

Shanghai, China. Drone photo by @dnevozhai
Shanghai, China. Drone photo by @dnevozhai

Houston, Texas, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California. Created by @dailyoverview, source imagery: @nearmap
Los Angeles, California. Created by @dailyoverview, source imagery: @nearmap

Shanghai, China

Shanghai, China. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @digitalglobe
Shanghai, China. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @digitalglobe

Sagamihara, Japan

Sagamihara, Japan. Drone photo by Rob Antill (@digitalanthill) and Ben Steensls (@randomoperator)
Sagamihara, Japan. Drone photo by Rob Antill (@digitalanthill) and Ben Steensls (@randomoperator)

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

New Orleans, Louisiana. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @nearmap
New Orleans, Louisiana. Created by @benjaminrgrant, source imagery: @nearmap

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California. @benjaminrgrant / Source Imagery: @nearmap
Los Angeles, California. @benjaminrgrant / Source Imagery: @nearmap

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About this author
Cite: Ghisleni, Camilla. "In Transit: Large-Scale Road Infrastructures Seen from Above" [Em trânsito: infraestruturas viárias de grande escala vistas de cima] 25 Mar 2021. ArchDaily. (Trans. Duduch, Tarsila) Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/958978/in-transit-large-scale-road-infrastructures-seen-from-above> ISSN 0719-8884
Sagamihara, Japan. Drone photo by Rob Antill (@digitalanthill) and Ben Steensls (@randomoperator)

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