12238 - City and Land Analysis

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Serena Orlandi

  • Credits 2

  • SSD ICAR/14

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures

  • Language Italian

  • Campus of Cesena

  • Degree Programme Single cycle degree programme (LMCU) in Architecture (cod. 0881)

Academic Year 2023/2024

Learning outcomes

The module aims to provide a series of useful tools for understanding the shape of the territory and its relationship with the shape of urban settlements. Through morphological and typological analyses, mappings, comparative analyses, the student will acquire skills that will allow to highlight the reasons for urban form and architectural form. This knowledge process will become an essential basis for the development of projects aimed at enhancing and transforming places.

Course contents

The module "CITY AND LAND ANALYSIS" (2 CFU) is part of the integrated course LABORATORIO DI LAUREA: VILLES MINIÉRES DU MAROC-VDM (C.I. 16 CFU).

The Course consists of the characterizing modules/teachings of Architectural and Urban Composition (8 CFU - THE PROJECT FOR THE HORIZONTAL CITY; 2 CFU - CITY AND LAND ANALYSIS), of a module/teaching of History of Architecture (HISTORY OF THE CITY - 2 CFU), of a module/teaching related to the discipline of Restoration (DOCUMENTATION AND PROTECTION OF CULTURAL HERITAGE - 2 CFU FU) and a module/course on Urban Planning Theories (PRODUCTION TERRITORIES - 2 CFU).

The module of "CITY AND LAND ANALYSIS" (2 CFU), deals with the reading of the urban and architectural form as a complex system in its relationship with the elements of the territory - geographical, environmental and morphological, landscape and infrastructures - which substantially define the character of a specific context. The critical analysis and identification of these aspects represent a fundamental support for the knowledge activity necessary for the elaboration of the project proposal.

The urban form, understood in relation to its territory, reveals characteristics of permanence and mutation, the dynamics of transformation and suggests procedural strategies that represent a crucial design reference.

The aim of the course is to address the analysis of the city and the territory as an operable material supporting the design activity, in order to learn how to map, observe and critically read the elements, understand how they intervene and deal with the urban and architectural project.

Some worker villages, linked to the presence of mining settlements in Morocco, selected as case studies, will be studied through an analytical path of knowledge which, starting from the reading of maps, historical photos, cartographies and aerial photographs, will reconstruct the development process of the urban form, going to identify elements of permanence, urban facts, monuments, green areas, forms of settlements, natural elements, infrastructures, etc., to establish design lines for the development, transformation and enhancement of the existing context.

The activities have a fundamentally laboratory character: the students will analyze the urban structure divided into groups and will develop exercises of redesign, analysis and critical mapping on the case studies, also through the creation of architecture models.


For a theoretical framework of the topics that will be addressed during the course, the reading of some of the following books is recommended:

  • Bacon, E. N. (1967). Design of Cities. New York: The Viking Press.
  • Calvino, I. (2016). Le città invisibili. Milano: Mondadori.
  • Corner, J. (1999). In, D. C Cosgrove (ed.), Mappings. London: Reaktions Books.
  • De Carlo, G. (2019). La città e il territorio. Macerata: Quolibet.
  • Gandelsonas, M. (2000). X-Urbanism. Princeton: Architectural Press.
  • Hertweck F., & Marot S. (eds). (2013). The City in the City, Berlin: A Green Archipelago.
  • Hertzberger, H. (1991). Lessons for students in architecture. Rotterdam: 010 Publishers.
  • Krier, R. (1997). Lo spazio della città. Torino: CittàStudi.
  • Lynch, K. (1969). L’immagine della città. Padova: Marsilio.
  • Lynch, K. (1981). Il senso del Territorio. Milano: Il saggiatore.
  • Pignatti, L. (cur.). (2011). Mind the Map. Mappe, diagrammi e dispositivi cartografici. Milano: Postmedia books.
  • Rossi, A. (1995). L’architettura della città. Milano: Città Studi edizioni.
  • Ungers, O.M., Koolhaas, R., Kollhoff, H., Owaska, A., & Riemann, P. (1977), The City in the City, Berlin: a Green Archipelago. Cornell University. Zurich: Lars Müller publishers.

Further and more specific bibliographic references will be provided during the course. Please also refer to the bibliography indicated for the module "THE PROJECT FOR THE HORIZONTAL CITY" (8 CFU).

Teaching methods

The teaching will combine theoretical contributions, classroom reviews and practical activities of reading and analytical-critical mapping of the urban form and the territory on some selected case studies.

Assessment methods

The exam of the integrated laboratory involves verifying the learning of the contents of all the modules/courses that make it up and takes place in a single test, aimed at assesing the suitability of the students to start preparing their degree thesis. The final exam, in individual form, will consist in the illustration and discussion of the design elaborations produced during the course; it will also include the theoretical verification of the aspects relating to the assigned topic and of the topics covered in the laboratory.

In relation to the "CITY AND LAND ANALYSIS" module (2 CFU), The development of some graphic works (maps, diagrams, models) will be required in order to evaluate the analytical-critical reading ability of the urban form in relation to the elements of the territory, together with an oral discussion on the contents of the activities carried out during the course. Periodic reviews in the classroom and intermediate discussion seminars are also envisaged. Further specifications will be provided as the course progresses.

Teaching tools

The teaching materials (frontal lessons and exercises) will be made available in digital format on the UNIBO platform of the VIRTUAL LEARNING ENVIRONMENT (https://virtuale.unibo.it/).

Office hours

See the website of Serena Orlandi