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Outside the Metropolis: Architecture for Everyday People in Remote / Regional / Rural Areas

Part 2 Dissertation 2004
Belinda Gleeson
Queensland University of Technology Brisbane | Australia
What connection do everyday people have with architecture? More specifically what connection do everyday people in regional Queensland have with architecture? If we can not answer these questions, than we can not improve architecture’s accessibility to everyday people. Improving architecture’s accessibility to everyday people does not mean providing ramps so that a building can be accessed, it refers to getting everyday people to consider architecture to be within their reach.

This study does not try to identify strategies to improve architecture’s accessibility to everyday people, due to the lack of information to base those strategies on. Instead this study has undertaken to establish a basis of information on everyday people's connection to architecture in regional Queensland. This information could lead to additional correlation of similar studies and future identification of strategies to improve architecture's accessibility. The basis of information addressed in this study focuses on issues that were established as possibly affecting architecture's accessibility to everyday people. The issues focused on were: the client architect relationship, architecture and the everyday and the connection of a community to architecture. These issues were addressed in regards to regional areas of Queensland where the apparent lack of connection to architecture is more pronounced.

This study has found that the connection the regional community had with architecture involved a lack of direct contact with, or knowledge of , architecture. The perception and understanding of architecture by the community was expressed as generalizations rather than specific knowledge. In spite of these generalizations the regional community still maintained an interest in and high regard for architecture. This study has begun to address some of the issues that might affect everyday people's connection to architecture. Further correlation of similar studies of both regional communities and architects practicing in regional areas are needed to establish more conclusively the outcomes that have begun to be established as part of this study. As part of the Year of the Built Environment, the community study will possibly be furthered; the template for this study will be posted on the Year of the Built Environment 2004 Queensland web site where communities will be invited to carny out a similar study.

Belinda Gleeson

Belinda Gleeson's dissertation, Outside the Metropolis: Architecture for Everyday People, challenges both high art ideals within the architectural profession and also the community's views of architect's and architecture. Her aim was to highlight the lack of priority given to the "everyday" compared to the" extraordinary" and redirect the architectural profession's focus towards the "everyday". The term "everyday" for the purpose of the research has focused on a regional community in Australia and has given attention to the to often overlooked architectural opportunities within regional areas, which to date have been given less attention in architectural research, criticism and history.

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