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Housing and urban continuity: The 1930s urbanistic experiments in Oran [ITU J Faculty Arch]
ITU J Faculty Arch. Articles in Press: ITUJFA-39206 | DOI: 10.5505/itujfa.2021.39206  

Housing and urban continuity: The 1930s urbanistic experiments in Oran

Sofiane Taibi, Mohamed Madani2
Department of Architecture, Faculty of Architecture and Civil Engineering, University of Science and Technology of Oran, Laboratoire Métropole Architecture Urbanisme Société (LAMAUS), Oran, Algeria

By drawing attention to the beginnings of Urbanism in France, this work aspires of replying the problems experienced by today’s Algerian cities, which fail to produce a coherent and harmonious urban tissue, and whose urbanism instruments replicate models copied on the 1950s Grands-Ensembles. The 1930s in France correspond to a period of theoretical and regulatory upheavals in the making of towns, where a new generation of city thinkers, the urban planners, develop for the first time Urban Plans for French agglomerations. Considered revolutionary, their concepts will be better received on the southern shores of the Mediterranean, especially in Oran, where a new world is under construction. This article’s objective is to verify the following hypothesis: the 1930s Oran’s urban tissue was built in a context favorable to experimentation, in a logic aiming the city’s homogenization and its urban continuity, through the design and construction of autonomous housing agglomerations. Having exposed the Oran’s first enlargement urban qualities, I’ll reduce the field of study to the Choupot district, located between the city-center and the ZHUN Yaghmoracen. These three urban strata will be then compared through their forms, their history and their mutual articulations, applying many tools such as maps and aerial photographs analysis, revealing for the urban tissues designed in the 30s, a high urban density and a typological diversity of housing and urban forms, which integrate with the city-center. Conversely, the Yaghmoracen district, whose scale and functioning are evocative of the Grands-Ensembles, generates social and spatial segregation of the urban tissue.

Keywords: Housing, Social habitat, Suburbs, Urban fabric, Urban growth.

Corresponding Author: Sofiane Taibi, Algeria

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