Arch.Uth Postgraduate Course Postgraduate Course Postgraduate Course Postgraduate Course Arch.Uth Ελληνικά
Design Studio Required Elective at semester(s) 7, 9, ECTS: 12



Analysis, Synthesis, Evaluation

Public architecture is an elementary component in shaping thecharacter of a city. Public buildings are interwoven in the urban fabric and this relation can be traced to the beginnings of human dwelling, already by the emergence of human community and settlement. One of the oldest, central and most important public spaces of a city is its Agora, its market. The word bears until today an important and central meaning in public life and contemporary society, in both local and global scale. Old market buildings are restored and reused, while the contemporary trend of building shopping malls could be interpreted as a new form of the old marketplace. How can we design a public shopping and cultural centre today? How does such a public building intervene in and affect the urban fabric? Can contemporary commercialized culture be inverted to a cultural trade and commerce? Trying to answer these questions through design can offer great educational and creational opportunities to architects. The design studio Agora aims at understanding the way the various complex – often controversial – spatial elements configure architectural space, urban landscape and the general human environment.


The design studio belongs to the general category of architectural design involving public buildings, including the study and analysis of greater parts of the building’s urban environment. The design project, the placement and organization of the marketplace, has both architectural and urban implications. Therefore, historical as well as other theoretical and critical issues of designing a public market are important elements of the design process. Case-studies of marketplaces through different time periods and at various places of the globe, as well as contemporary trends in architecture and urban planning offer the essential documentation and data for conceiving the market problematic in its most composite and generic dimension.

During the semester, a dynamic design method evolves, with constant and reciprocal movements between the different scales and notions: from the general, greater urban environment to the more specific and small-scale elements of space and backwards. The notion of organic-functional city is expounded in the studio, offering a conceptual design toolset for understanding and organizing the multiple, over-lapping, intervened and complex levels of the design process. Moreover, the studio itself follows a dynamic process: it moves dialectically and reciprocally between theory (presentations, talks, ideas) and practice (design, visiting sites and buildings, city walks), between the general (history, commerce, culture, urbanism) and the specific (product, shop, design and structural elements). At the same time, the studio follows a series of lessons, with an introduction to the subject, presentations of case studies and bibliographical references, particularization of the project’s given (specific place, mapping analysis, configuration of the building’s program).


Every student team will present a case study of a market.  Subsequently, every team will make an urban analysis of the given site of the project. Students are expected to design a central shopping and cultural public building, based on theoretical analysis and design concept in the specific site.


  • Camp,JohnMcK. II, The Athenian Agora: A Short Guide to the Excavations, Athens: ASCSA, 2003.
  • Chung, Chuihua Judy / Jeffrey Inaba / Rem Koolhaas / Sze TsungLeong (επιμ.), Harvard design school guide to shopping, Köln: Taschen, 2001.
  • Despo, Jan, «Das neuzeitliche Kulturzentrum – die Agora», Bauen + Wohnen 17, 1963, σ. 49-61.
  • Hilberseimer, Ludwig, Großstadtarchitektur, Stuttgart: Julius Hoffmann, 1927.English edition: Metropolisarchitecture and selected essays, Richard Anderson (ed.), New York: GSAPP BOOKS, 2013.
  • Schmiechen, James / Kenneth Carls , The British Market Hall:ASocial and Architectural History, New Haven: Yale University Press, 1999.
  • Tyrwhitt, Jacqueline / Josep Lluis Sert / Ernesto Rogers (επιμ.), The Heart of the City: towards the humanisation of urban life, CIAM 8, Λονδίνο: Lund Humphries, 1952.
  • van Es, Evelien / Gregor Harbusch / Bruno Maurer / Muriel Pérez / Kees Somer / Daniel Weiss, Atlas of the Functional City. CIAM 4 and Comparative Urban Analysis, Bussum: THOTH/ Zürich: gta, 2014.
  • Zucker, Paul, Town and square from the Agora to the Village Green, New York: Columbia University Press, 1959.