Lecture Series

IMAP Lecture 5 by Surya Bhakta Sangachhe

IMAP Lecture 5 by Surya Bhakta Sangachhe

Surya Bhakta Sangachhe
Introduction to the Concept of Space in Kathmandu 

Space is a new catchword in today’s urban socio-culture. It is often connected as ‘gathering place’, which is an element of the larger concept of social space but does not necessarily define the concept of space and public space as a whole. Many spaces exist and are created for common shared usage throughout a large or small community. Spaces are sometimes so vibrant with life that they form the highlight and heart of city cores, and yet there are many spaces, wherein the rate of utility appears most minimal and are easily disregarded as unimportant.

Spaces (public open spaces) in Kathmandu are more defined as social spaces, following traditional and cultural trends.  Many spaces exist by the natural design of the valley and most spaces are defined by architectural design that predates modern urban design.  The parts of Kathmandu that are open to the public use are numerous and various, yet though there is a need for space not just for socio-culture uses, there is an even more necessity in terms of disaster risk management.

But what defines space in a modern urban context? What purposes do spaces serve? Are there parameters both physical and abstract that can be used to identify them? Does a city or towns have a need for them?

This lecture will identify and give a more precise picture of what public space is, to distinguish space in terms of type and utility. It will also address the issue of why public open space is a necessity and draw a picture of possible scenarios in cases of natural disasters.

*  *  *

Surya Bhakta Sangachhe is currently the Senior Technical advisor at National Society for Earthquake Technology Nepal (NSET). He is a senior Urban Planner as well as a Heritage conservation Expert. He received a Master's in Architecture from Kiev Civil Engineering Institute and a second Master’s degree in Conservation of Cultural Heritage form the Institute of Advanced Architectural Studies, University of York. He served at the Department of Urban Development and Building Construction for 34 years. He has also led the Lumbini Development Project and Kathmandu Valley’s urban land development project. He is the co-author of Land Pooling Manual. He led a team of architects, planners and engineers to develop the Strategic Development Plan of Kathmandu Valley (KV Development Plan 2020).

Download or Listen Audio