In this research, an attempt will be held to answer some of the questions of urban nature, that arose during my stay and activity in the three metropolises of the title: Athens, Budapest and Rotterdam. Being both an observer and a habitant in all of those cities, I was constantly processing the images of the urban environment to which I was exposed each time. Therefore, out of all the urban topics, the object of this research will more specifically focus on the image of the city. The investigation of the image of the city will be carried out through an extensive analysis, combining not only academic research methods but also various empirical data of my personal experience in each city.
The study of the form of the city, that is the field of the urban morphology, will be the main analytic tool of the research and thus the main mean to examine the image of each city. As Aldo Rossi mentions “urban form concentrates both the total of the characteristics of the urban factors and their very conception”. As we will soon find out, urban morphology is a notably wide scientific field with different approaches towards the complicated urban environment.
Firstly, we will define the methodology of this research through the study of the theoretical approaches of famous architects and urban designers, as well as linguists, in an effort to specify our research field but also shape the suitable tools and means in order to delve into the urban morphology. Afterwards, the urban forms of the three cities, will be compared and parallelly examined in order to point out the special characteristics of each one of them. After all, in this research we will try to comprehend in which manner and to what extent does the urban morphology affects and configures the image of the city, through focusing on the specific urban character that emerged in each city.