Definition of city as a complex system opens up to a series of problems that involve the legitimacy of the design of the technocratic plan. The plan nowadays cannot be considered as a black-box tool, but it might be considered as an open process, able to adapt to the needs of citizens and to the socio-economic and environmental contexts. As many scholars underlined, the plan is sequence of phases that must be programmed and that considers the project as a possible scenario, not a definitive one. In a complex and flexible city, the planner (here considered both as the urban studies expert and the political decision maker) has the role to create the conditions for the development of the city, and for creating or maintaining the possibilities of evolution of the citizens who live in a certain territory. In this sense, the strategic aspects of the city plan and its programmatic role, have a relation more with the rules system than with the design one; but it is also very clear that the human space in urban context is made of physically well defined elements. Basing on the most commonly cited example of anti-planning city organization, the MVRDV project Oosterwold, authors underline the importance of the physical and geographical components inside the rules of a plan, nevertheless recognizing the difficulty to establish detailed boundaries to a complex and flexible city.
Roberto De Lotto
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