The context is the circumstances that surround and area, a site or a place. Understanding the context is essential when creating or transforming both interior and exterior spaces.
It is essential to understand and learn from the surroundings, both spaces immediately adjacent to the place, but also understanding the overall layers of the cities, towns and villages we live in. These are views, visual and physical links, access, movement patterns, uses of buildings, history, scale and many more.
When the context, its layers and its users is properly understood a new space will provide a qualitative addition to the urban fabric. When this essential analysis is lacking cities become disjointed and problematic for their users.
The disaster of not letting the urban and rural context guide is witnessed in problematic infrastructure, dark, unconnected, unusable and inaccessible spaces that are at best uncomfortable and at its worst dangerous.
This ultimately creates compromised lifestyles, poverty and anti-social behaviour.
Bad cities can destroy people’s lives while great cities with well-planned urban structures can make people thrive, create prosperity and ultimately give its residents the opportunity to live the life they choose.