City landscape I
Studying city landscapes is a disturbing way to spend your time. It is studying the setting of your life, the coulisses that surround your actions and your acting. Although most of us live in towns, we do not devote enough time to the study of their landscape, their form, their look. Only when the setting is so wrong that you feel how it damages the atmosphere, the city landscape receives public attention.
Just have a look at the picture above. It is taken from the bridge that goes over the train station of my district in Zurich. The big building in the background is called Lochergut. It is famous in Switzerland. Once it was a signal that modernity had found its way into the heart of europe. Today it is known to most people for its ugliness. On the left there is a petrol station. You could also say it is a famous one for it is built at the road that connects the two national highways that lead straight into the centre of Zurich (There was a time when constructing highways through the town centres was considered to be a brilliant idea…). On the right you can see the tramway depot. Just in the heart of Zurich. And this is all connected by the lowered railtrack. Interesting landscape, isn’t it? Beautiful landscape? I don’t know. How should we judge? It’s just the look of a town. At times, when the sun shines into the glass constructions of the tramdepot and the beige wall of the Lochergut building it acquires a dramatic beauty. However, these moments are rare and we should look out for them, when we walk through our towns.