Deciphering the morphology of Bhaktapur (Kathmandu valley), a city of squares
Image source: Google Earth Image

This course aims to provide an understanding through decoding the complex and dynamic pattern of layering of physical forms (morphology) of the historic city of Bhaktapur, a city of squares. The form of the city is characterized by the composition of the various complex built (tole, a residential urban sector) and unbuilt (squares) layers by imposition, assimilation, amalgamation, and reinterpretation of values as a result of diverse socio-cultural and religious influences.
In a limited way, the effort is to sensitize the students towards the various building typologies, their relationship to the hierarchy of public squares bounded by streets network, and how certain inherent sets of rules shape the character of the urban sector. The focus of the exercise will be deciphering the various layers associated with the public spaces (ceremonial and residential squares) that are important foci and catalysts of the organization of the overall built environment (morphology) of the core city. The students will develop critical analytical skills through documentation, on-site observations, representation techniques, consideration, reflection, in-class conversation & reading responses.

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