Universitat Internacional de Catalunya

Urban Design II

Urban Design II
First semester
Project Planning Module
Urbanism 2
Main language of instruction: English

Other languages of instruction: Catalan, Spanish

Teaching staff

Subject to prior appointment.


Design teachers:

Dra. Arq. Carmen Mendoza Arroyo

Arq. Anna Gutierrez


The Urban Design 2 course is a starting point for students towards designing at an urban scale. The course is based on a continuous dialectical connection between theory and practice that guides students towards the development of a defined proposal for residential development. It conveys to the student that the analysis and planning of an urban sector should be accompanied by reflecting on the fact that the residential project is the starting point for addressing broader aspects of the city. The proposal for the new residential development should be integrated in the local identity and space, its uses and its architecture. It should go into detail about proposed plans for urban development and ideas on urban composition, which is achieved through an analysis of the location and the models of urban planning culture for residential projects. The neighbourhoods to be designed should constitute a new generation of spaces as much for the main activity of providing housing as for social aspects and the natural environment.

Pre-course requirements

Students can only take the Urban Desgin and Planning 2 course once they have passed Urban Desgin and Planning 1.


_To provide students with a scaled method of urban planning (regional to local) based on reading, analysis and proposal with the objective of applying it to a project for residential growth.

_To provide students with the methodology to develop a proactive “in situ” analysis to formulate some initial integrated urban strategies on a scale of 1:5,000.

_To provide students with the tools and the criteria for intervening in a specific context and formulating a proposal for the organizational structure of a new residential development, defining the urban space on a scale of 1:2,000.

_For students to work with the minimum unit of repetition for the residential project, exploring in depth the building typology and its ground floor design on a scale of 1:1,000.

_For students to apply the concepts, basic dimensions and reference models of road and residential structures and a system of public spaces in the design for the planned residential growth.

_For students to explore in depth and incorporate contemporary issues into the design of the neighbourhoods planning, such as the principles of diversity (uses and typologies), identity (civic areas, unique features, etc.) and sustainability (footpaths, public transport, services, etc.) to create the conditions for urban quality.


  • 35-T - Ability to conceive, put into practice and develop urban projects
  • 37 - Ability to develop functional programmes for buildings and urban spaces.
  • 42 - Ability to catalogue buildings and urban heritage and plan their protection.
  • 45-T - Ability to design and execute roads and urban development, gardening and landscaping projects
  • 46 - Ability to apply urban planning ordinances and standards.
  • 47-T - Ability to prepare environmental and landscaping surveys and plans to correct environmental impacts.
  • 51 - To acquire adequate knowledge of the study methods of social needs, quality of life, habitability and basic housing programmes
  • 52 - To acquire adequate knowlege of the environment, sustainability and the principles of conserving energy and environmental resources.
  • 53 - To acquire adequate knowledge of architectural, urban development and landscaping traditions of Western culture, as well as their technical, climate, economic, social and ideological foundations
  • 55 - To acquire adequate knowledge of the relationship between cultural patterns and the social responsibilities of the architect
  • 57 - To acquire adequate knowledge of urban sociology, theory, economy and history.
  • 58 - To acquire adequate knowledge of the methodological principles of urban planning and metropolitan and regional development.
  • 59 - To acquire adequate knowledge of the mechanisms of preparing and managing urban development plans on any scale.
  • 60 - To acquire knowledge of civil, administrative, urban planning, building and professional regulations.
  • 61 - To acquire knowledge of feasibility analysis, supervision and coordination of integrated projects.

Learning outcomes

 At the end of this course, students should be capable of:

Being familiar with and having applied the scaled method of urban planning to a residential growth project.

Conducting a propositional analysis and integrated urban strategies on a scale of 1:5,000.

Analysing, from a critical and propositional viewpoint of in situ models and case studies, those structural elements that make up a residential entity: buildings, road network, open spaces and facilities.

Planning a residential complex by putting into practice the urban intervention instruments for designing a general organizational framework on a scale of 1:2,000, including its systems (road network, public spaces) within the hierarchy and continuity of the existing environment.

Designing the minimum unit of repetition of the residential complex on a scale of 1:1,000, and working on urban relationships at ground level and urban sections on a scale of 1:500.

Designing and defining public spaces and unique features of the residential complex on a scale of 1:500 and establishing the basic criteria for the urban development of streets and pedestrian pathways on a scale of 1:200.


Class 1. The housing and residential project . Introduction 

Class 2. The urban design and planning method. 

Class 3. Planning and designning the road network. 

Class 4. The system of public and community spaces. 

Class 5. From the house to the city I

Class 6. Examples of residential projects

Class 7. From the house to the city II

Teaching and learning activities

In person

Urbanism 2 teaching is developed in a continuous workshop where theoretical and practical learning is integrated. The workshop includes two parts.

Desing Workshop. Its objective is to project a neighborhood through the following phases:

  • Reading of the area at 1/5000 and 1/2000 scale.
  • Urban structure proposal of the new neighborhood connected to city systems at 1/5000 scale.
  • Masterplan at 1/2000 scale and sections at 1/1000 scale.
  • Design of the ground floor and public spaces at 1/1000 scale and sections at 1/500 scale.
  • Design of the residential unit at 1/500 scale and sections at 1/200 scale.
  • Design of the most relevant streets at 1/200 scale.

Theory Workshop. Its objective is to provide theoretical content, models and instrumental bases to develop the residential project of the Design Workshop. Theoretical sessions are supplemented with specific practical exercises to support the theory. The exercises are developed in class.

Class exhibition
35-T 37 42 45-T 46 47-T 51 52 53 54 57 58 59 60 61 0,67
Class participation
35-T 37 42 45-T 46 47-T 51 52 53 54 57 58 59 60 61 0,67
Clase practice
35-T 37 42 45-T 46 47-T 51 52 53 54 57 58 59 60 61 0,67
35-T 37 42 45-T 46 47-T 51 52 53 54 57 58 59 60 61 0,75
Individual or group study
35-T 37 42 45-T 46 47-T 51 52 53 54 57 58 59 60 61 2,75

Evaluation systems and criteria

In person

The evaluation will be continuous, and the ability to express in a synthetic and ordered way the contents corresponding to each of the phases of the Design Workshop will be assessed. The assimilation of the theoretical contents, the reference models and the instrumental bases provided by the Theory Workshop, and its application to the residential project of the Desing Workshop will be especially considered.

The evaluation of the Design Workshop represents 80% of the final grade.

The evaluation of the Theory Workshop represents 20% of the final grade.

It is considered essential for passing the subject:

  • Attendance at workshops. Absences will always have to be justified and can never exceed 15% of the course attendance. If this condition is not met, the student will not be able to continue the course.
  • Deliver all the exercises of the Theory Workshop and have a positive assessment of the whole.
  • Deliver and approve all the exercises of the Design Workshop.

Bibliography and resources


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 Espai públic

Ajuntament de Barcelona, Barcelona Espai Public. Barcelona:  Ajuntament de Barcelona, 1993.

ASHIHARA, Y. El diseño de espacios exteriores. Barcelona: G. Gili, 1982.

BORJA, J.; MUXI, Z. El espacio público: ciudad y ciudadanía. Barcelona: Diputació de Barcelona, 2003.

FARR, D. Sustainable Urbanism. Urban design with nature. Hobboken, New Jersey: John wiley & Sons, Inc. 2008.

 Ralph Erskine, Team X

BAKEMA, J.B. Thoughts about architecture. London: Academy Editions, 1981.

COLLYMORE, P. The architecture of Ralph Erskine. London: Academy Editions, 1994.

VAN DEN HEUVEL, D.; RISSELADA, M. Team 10,1953-81. In search of the utopia of the present. Roterdam:  Nai Publishers, 2005.