SEDA – Urban Design Studio – Exercise-1…Inferences…

SEDA – Urban Design Studio – Exercise-1…Inferences…


Market as public place

  • Traditional markets (bazaars) have a very strong relationship with public space. Presence of a busy street, thoroughfare, chawk, or plaza (maidan) is an absolute necessity for a thriving market. More the market is public in nature, more it is accessible, and more it is successful.
  • Shops on the ground floor are naturally more successful, as they are part of the street. For the shops on the upper floors to be effective, the ‘street’ will have to be taken up by the means of pedestrian network. Essentially, the ‘streets’ will have to be generated at upper levels that have a smooth transition, physical and visual connection with the street on the ground floor.
  • Diverse mix of program/activities along with the market keeps the markets alive in the evenings and nights. These activities also reassert the ‘public’ character of the markets; in the absence of which the spaces tend to be dead at evenings and nights.

Mix of formal and informal market

  • Close to eighty percent of all the shopping that happens in India, is facilitated by hawkers, vendors, etc; what is generally referred as ‘informal’ market.
  • Informal markets attract large crowds, which in turn helps the formal market (shops) to sustain their business.
  • The new market forms should take this fact into consideration and have a healthy mix of formal and informal shops.
  • The distribution of formal and informal market should encourage mixed layouts, rather than strict, and separate zones for both.


  • Layering can be observed at various scales in ‘bazaars’.
  • The flexible layer between the legal boundary of the shop and the street allows for shop expansion and creative displays. This in-between layer helps in blurring the boundary between shops and street.
  • The pedestrian layer between the edge of the building and the vehicular passage allows scope of various informal activities, trees, seating, eateries, etc.

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