Analysis: Piazza del Popolo
TJD 02 - 10 - 2010

Piazza del Popolo in Rome, Italy is an example of how a public space can create an identity for the community. The space is the center of entertainment for communities surrounding the plaza. Also, the space has created an economic stimulant to restaurants and service based business. On the contrary, there are methods of enhancing the use of this space for the future. Obelisk To being with, location has influenced the success of this space. The plaza is situated with three major circulations systems feeding from the plaza. These systems include Via del Corso, Via di Pipetta and Villa de Babuino. First, Via del Corso is on axis with Monumentoa Vittorio Emanuele II. This connection creates a sense of identity for the plaza and the city. Further, these corridors also have high end shopping outlets that attract people to the plaza. This has resulted in Via del Corso being transformed into a pedestrian only access corridor. The plaza is also adjacent to Pincio Gardens. The garden is designed to link with Plaza del Popolo by integrating terraced water fountains. The verticality of the water feature creates interest from the gardens on the peak of the hill to the plaza. Also, interest is drawn towards the plaza from the monument by focusing on several design principles. One of these design elements includes narrowing the street progressively from the monument to the plaza. As a result, this decreases vehicular congestion around the plaza and creates a sense of compression. Also, the scale of buildings decrease beginning from the Monumento Vittorio Emanuele II towards Piazza del Popolo. This creates the sense of an open space. During entertainment performances, people are drawn away from the center of the plaza. Instead visitors gravitate towards the open space in front of the west end water fountain. On the contrary, visitors who pass through the plaza commonly traverse through the center. As a result, this area is a congested pedestrian corridor. There are several elements that would enhance the use of this park. To begin with, there are few areas to sit down and relax. Secondly, additional shade elements would attract visitors to this plaza throughout the year. This would decrease solar radiation and serve as protection from rain. Additionally, the plaza does not have a sense of human scale. Therefore, segmenting the plaza into uses would increase functionality. The integration of sunken spaces could define areas for entertainment and relaxation. Also, vegetation could be used to create an organic environment and soften the vast paved space. Also, the central monument could be designed to accommodate pedestrian circulation. In conclusion, Plaza del Popolo will continue to be a prosperous plaza in Rome. Although enhancing the plaza will ensure continued use for decades. Without a future redevelopment plan, the community will struggle to create a sense of identity. Bottom Left Corner: The section of the pla illustrates the relationship with Pincio Gardens. Bottom Right Corner: The perspective sketch illustrates visitors are drawn towards the West side of the plaza.

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