Walking the Streets: No More Motorways for Belfast
This article explores how the spatial qualities and diversity of one of Belfast’s main arteries, North Street/Peter’s Hill, was transformed by urban planning decisions throughout the twentieth century. It looks specifically at how a car dominated planning system contributed to the deterioration of the street fabric. The analysis of historic maps and plans enables to point out how the function and dimensions of the buildings, based on ideas of plot-based urbanism, have contributed to the vibrancy of North Street/Peter’s Hill, and how the more recent transformation of those functions and dimensions damaged these streets. The article acknowledges that streets are made of the social and cultural context in which they exist, while their form and function is instrumental to their embedded public life.