Improving the design of urban underground space in metro stations using the space syntax methodology

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    35 Citations (Scopus)


    This article explores the potential use of the space syntax methodology for evaluating user wayfinding, orientation and visibility in urban underground space. Two case studies from the Brussels-Capital Region are presented: the Bockstael metro station and the Anneessens premetro station. The use of the space syntax method is proposed to produce measurable or 'hard' parameters on design aspects that might otherwise be perceived as qualitative or 'soft' design aspects.Four space syntax analyses are conducted: an axial analysis, an orientability analysis, an isovist analysis, and agent-based modelling. A comprehensive, but effective, method using space syntax is developed to optimise design and renovation alternatives.We conclude that space syntax can provide a tangible contribution to the qualitative design of urban underground spaces. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)64-74
    Number of pages11
    JournalTunnelling and Underground Space Technology
    Issue numberFebruary
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014


    • Brussels
    • Design
    • Metro
    • Orientation
    • Soft modes
    • Space syntax
    • Station
    • Underground
    • Urban underground space
    • Visibility
    • Wayfinding


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