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History Project

Project Leader: Masahiko Takamura, Associate Professor, Construction Engineering, Division of Engineering, Hosei University
The cities developed along seaside areas and river basins have enjoyed rich resources and materials in their long history, shaping distinctive waterfront spaces. Some of the representative examples are: metropolis including Tokyo originated in castle towns, and port towns formed from middle age to pre-modern period in Japan; or Venice, Amsterdam, Brussels, Suzhou, and Bangkok that share similar spatial structures each other. Moreover, it is worth noting that Canal St. Martin in Paris and canal networks linking inland of United Kingdom had served important roles for the city.
These cities have been separated from water for the shift toward land cities in the modernization processes. However, it is needed to shed light on their urban cultures fostered based on a close relation to water. For the first place, we need to clarify the mechanism of spatial formation of waterfront that had served as a cradle of each culture, thereby find historical elements for urban renovation. It is also required to consider the background from perspective of social history, that might support city spaces and serve as a contributor to spatial changes.
In History Project, waterfront spaces will be reevaluated from new standpoints and historical perspectives, to establish a basis for regeneration plans.

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