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Vorträge und Posterpräsentationen (ohne Tagungsband-Eintrag):

A. Hofer:
"Latin American Urban Sceneries in Focus: Technology, Politics, Art; The Manual de Urbanismo by Karl H. Brunner";
Vortrag: Civic Art Conference, School of Architecture, Miami USA, Miami, USA (eingeladen); 04.10.2002 - 06.10.2002.



Kurzfassung englisch:
Latin American Urban Sceneries - Technology, Politics, Art
The Manual de Urbanismo by Karl Heinrich Brunner 1939/40.

The Austrian Urban Planner Karl Heinrich Brunner wrote 1939/40 in Bogotá the two-volumed Manual de Urbanismo, the first Handbook for Urban Planning in Spanish language. At the time of its appearance it was one of the most extensive publications on Urban Planning in the region of Latin America. The content of the Manual is divided into the main fields of the profession of an Urban Planner, including aspects of technical requirements, design topics, political arguments and mechanisms for the practical application of projects.

The author of the Manual, Karl Heinrich Brunner (1887-1960), studied Architecture and Economy at the Technical University of Imperial Vienna before World War One. His professor was the urban planner Karl Mayreder who conceived the famous Master Plan of Vienna in 1893. Brunnerís first professional experiences were determined by the shortage of resources after WW1 and the subsequent movement of Social Housing of the so called Red Vienna. Brunnerís work in the 1920s in Vienna is characterized by the search for practical solutions and considering the political components of Urban Planning strategies. In 1929 he was called to work in Santiago de Chile where he stayed until 1932. 1933 he followed an invitation to Bogotá to take over the Municipal Town Planning Office. Brunner shifted its center of life to South America and he remains even after the end of WW2, until 1948, with interruptions, in Colombia.
The work on the Manual de Urbanismo was at a time when Brunner already had 10 years of practice-oriented planning experience in Latin America. In 1938, after the successful finish of numerous urban development projects for the 400th anniversary of the foundation of Bogotá, he left the Municipality Planning and he dedicated himself to the theory of Urban Planning teaching at Universidad Nacional de Colombia. At the same time he started working on the Manual.
In 1939 the first volume was published which contains topics such as Housing and Urban Rehabil-itation. The second volume appeared one year later and analyzes the scale of settlements. A third volume, called "Zoning and Green Areas", was already in preparation at that time. The outbreak of WW2, however, made some journeys impossible, which where necessary for gathering material. Also after the war this third volume remained unpublished, even the manuscript has not been found again.

The Manual is particularly conceived as a Handbook with universal requirement. It is a Handbook, a text book and reader at the same time. It is dedicated to planners and land owners, as well as to politicians and to interested citizens, and to teachers and students. The content is divided into specialized chapters within the area of Urban Planning and Urban Design; a selective sample of representations from (Central-) European, Latin American and US-American Cities additionally illustrate the Manual.
The emphasis of the first volume is placed on the topics Housing, Dwelling and Urban Rehabilitation, whereby typologies and sketch studies are discussed. A large chapter embraces one of Brunnerís main fields of work, which is Social Housing and its political and financing mechanisms. The second volume mainly covers the scale of Urban Planning, where the principles of the Garden City are on focus. It deals with the morphology and typology of settlements, urban density topics as well as with elements of urban structure within the process of urban design. Further topics are road networks, traffic planning and public transportation. Additionally, Brunner analyzes design principles and technical aspects of urban infrastructure. The role of public space was particularly important in Brunnerís oeuvre. Therefore, the third volume should have focussed on Urban Zoning and Green Areas, but it remained unpublished.
The significance of the Manual de Urbanismo as an international Handbook on Urban Planning is determined by Karl Brunnerís personality . His performance as an Urban Planner in Austria as well as in Latin America has always concentrated on a multilevel field of work: Brunner saw his work composed by technical, artistic and political aspects at a balanced level. Moreover, the Manual became for several decades a standard work of our profession and represented an extremely synergetic exchange between Central European and (Latin-)American planning practices in Urban Planning.


Andreas Hofer, Vienna, July 19th 2002
ahofer@email.archlab.tuwien.ac.at

Erstellt aus der Publikationsdatenbank der Technischen Universitšt Wien.