Hee Sun (Sunny) Choi



Changes to the built environment brought about by economic and cultural globalization have resulted in a blurring of national identities worldwide. Consequently, place identity has emerged as a central concern for setting the 21st century urban development agenda. This paper examines the ways in which specific aspects of urban typology relate with cultural engagements and meanings within old and new, in terms of the transferable values of place identity, particularly within South East and Far East Asian countries. Firstly, the theoretical and practical key concepts for design ideology are described in relation to the value of place identity within contemporary urban forms. These key concepts are then operationalized in order to identify the implementation of the role of place identity, not only within architectural typology, but also through a cultural sense of space and time; a hybrid typological language. The focus of this paper is to explore how the role of place identity in physical built form relates with design qualities and cultural engagement, and how the needs of local culture can be incorporated, sustained and developed alongside contemporary architecture and rapid urban development. The paper provides a critical reflection and discussion of 21st Century architecture in South Korea, particularly how the locally situated and informed might be reconciled with the global aspirations of the contemporary city.


Place identity; contemporary architecture; cultural sustainability

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