Land Tactics of the Single Housing Unit in the Informal Urban Growth in Albania
Author: Artan Kacani
Affiliation: Polis University
Learning from the informal transitional phases is a process that focuses on the diversity and multiple forms in which land and building alike are shaped and re-shaped in the territory. Moreover, there might be various reasons as to why this perpetual condition persists in informal areas in the Albanian context. This diversity is analyzed and named according to the impact that it has on the territory, including land fragmentation and densifcation. The purpose of this research is to illustrate transitional phases, of the informal settlements, to identify the cases of the multiform and to open up an irrevocable professional debate on the matter that not all informal settlements are the same in the territory. This starts from the local Albanian practices of building informally to the actual form of territorial transition. All of the practices have one thing in common; they are half-realized utopias. Such is the urbanization process in Albania which has never co-occurred within the settlement and parceling in informal areas. It is up to urban planners and landscapers to identify these conditions even if the public and institutional apparatus do not deal with them. Passing from the informal practices and into their territorial partialities, the methodology gives a tactical description of the territorial impact as a result of the three processes of the urban informal growth in Albania: a) building, b) parceling, and c) putting in infrastructure. These processes are considered as a transitional phase and analyzed in this study. The multiform of their alternations can be described as land tactics, with a high impact on fragmentation and densifcation. The result illustrates and shows that not all the informal settlements are the same, although the same typology of the housing unit. Architects, landscapers, and social workers can contribute to the methodological solutions, starting from a single inhabitant and practices described and then enlarged to the regional scale of all 55 informal areas.
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