Researching current state
In order to find out why the open spaces in the center of Molenbeek work ineffectively and be frequently occupied by another urban activities, fieldwork about habitants’ routine related to familiar open spaces around their neighborhood is necessary. Fieldwork consists of 4 main processes: Observation, interview habitants and municipal; Mapping the network of open spaces in the center of Molenbeek; and Reviewing documents related to Molenbeek’s open spaces, public spaces.
- Observation, interview (Fig …): observing and collecting information from habitants that was how they use the open spaces related to their neighborhood. During interview, there were a number of groups of people who are categorized basing on age, sex, occupation, religion. To measure the quality of open spaces equitably, not only local habitants but also municipal were interviewed. The data which is collected from this process could examine simply the meaningful and familiar open spaces related to the habitants’ daily activities, their feelings with these places, and the physical and spiritual quality of these open spaces. For example, a positive correlation was found between habitants and Gentsesteenwerg, the main shopping street where is one of the most important public spaces in the center of Molenbeek. From that point, Saint Jean-le-Baptiste church is a boring place but it is an important point in which there is traditional relationship between this church and Molenbeek habitants.
- Mapping the network of open spaces (Fig …): this work was done by the planners basing on the data collected from the observation and interview process. These maps presented the relationship and quality of the open spaces, the voids. The quality of these spaces comprises not only physical characters such as trees, waterfront but also spiritual one such as accessibility, correlation with community. Clearly, the psychological factors are very significant because according to …, the social qualities are more important than the physical factors of parks (4). Furthermore, this network of open spaces could support planners concentrate on the main specific areas such as Gentsesteenwerg street, Saint Jean-le-Baptiste church, square of Maison Communal, and determine quickly the main problems of these places.
- Reviewing documents: there was a lot of effective knowledge which could collect from this process. Base on this knowledge, planner found out the information which was not referred in interview process and cannot be recognized easily by observation. Moreover, this process also helped planner understand more deeply about relationship between community and these open spaces. While the historical documents such as “…” could tell about the formation of open spaces, the practical experiences about designing an efficient open space can be derived from the report documents such as “Bonnevie Park”. In addition, in order to make research more closely to reality, the documents related...