A network of function over geometry

A network of function over geometry

Daniel Nairn on Brasilia, specifically on a network of paths showing where human activity was very different from the plan:

This is the network of function over geometry. The paths are trodden out of convenience, but they also gently meander.

In 1961, Lewis Mumford recognized this same tendency when Brasilia was under construction:

[T]he slow curve is the natural line of the footwalker, as anyone can observe as he looks back at his tracks in the snow across an open field.

People were willing to sacrifice aesthetics and even time when it came to choosing their paths. Mumford again:

See also:
The Modernist City, The Oregon Experiment

Organic planning does not begin with a preconceived goal; it moves from need to need, from opportunity to opportunity, in a series of adaptations that themselves become increasingly coherent and purposeful, so that they generate a complex final design, hardly less unified than a pre-formed geometric pattern.

[Image: The walking paths of Brasilia via discovering urbanism]