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The Barbican- a brutalist paradise in the City of London?


I left the underground station Moorgate at a sunny January morning and stood at the A501, walked along it southern and then turned to London Wall. From there I just went up some stairs till I arrived at the Barbican and got into the yard via a bridge across Forest Street. The Barbican was built during the 1960s until the 1980s on an area, which got destroyed by bombs during WWII. The Barbican Centre hosts an Art Gallery, the Museum of London, the Guidhall School of Music and Drama, a concert hall, a theatre, a conservatory and a library. 4000 people live in 2000 flats on 16 ha in the whole area. In the middle of the yard, the architects Chamberlin, Powell and Bon placed a big fountain, which is surrounded by palms and benches, from where you see all the three towers of the Barbican Complex. When you walk through the Barbican, it feels like walking through a village in the countryside, where you have everything for your daily life near your flat. The architects, who started designing in the 50s, dealt with questions, which still are and will be important depending urban life. For example, how to prevent distances from getting too long, offering public green spaces or keeping cars and other vehicles, in connection to them, also noise, out of residential quarters. It is a personal question, if someone wants to live in a housing complex like this, which everyone has to answer for him- or herself, but in modern cities it´s a way of living, that should be considered.











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