In order to create vibrant public spaces, people need to have a constant presence in these locations, whether they are on their own or in groups. In fact, they need to linger in these places and establish social interactions. To do so, one major element has to be incorporated into the urban setting: the bench.
This seating feature, simple or high tech, insures firstly the comfort of the passersby and animates the area consequently, through the addition of the missing human aspect. Sometimes, this is all it takes to revive a space that became a dull passage. The most basic urban design component can take many forms and can be created from different materials, always generating a statement and serving its purpose.
Wooden floors are know for their warm appearance, rich texture, and natural tones that vary according to the origin of the planks, changing with the weather and the passage of time. Outdoors, wooden surfaces are widely used for terraces and living areas, taking advantage of these inviting qualities to bring people together on warm and welcoming floors. Built with modular pieces, wooden decks can easily form artificial topographies, shaping creative and effective public spaces for rest, sports, games, and collective gathering.
The pillar has adorned many of the greatest monumental examples of Western architecture since antiquity, from the Doric columns of the Parthenon to the Corinthian capitals of the Pantheon portico. In the West, the legacies of these classical forms have permutated over the centuries and into modern times: the Doric columns of the Lincoln Memorial, the Ionic columns of the British museum portico, and the Villa Savoye’s pilotis are just a few examples of the classical column’s continued transformation and use over the last few centuries. Today, the round pillar continues to be used in modern design, both functionally and aesthetically. Below, we look into these elements in more detail, including their materials, construction, structural qualities, and several contemporary examples of their use.