Josep Llinàs and the Construct(ion) of Place Meaning in Urban Public Space: A Barcelona Case Study

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review

29 Downloads (Pure)


This paper presents and discusses key urban and architectural projects by Josep Llinàs Carmona, a Catalan architect who trained with Coderch and has practiced and taught in Barcelona since the early 1970s. Llinàs is recognised internationally for his sensitive approach to architectural design as a means to improve the quality of urban public space. This paper examines how Llinàs integrates architecture with the city, changing how it’s public spaces function without overemphasising his own buildings; an approach, the paper contends, that differentiates him from many of his peers. The paper combines case study data with Llinàs’ own reflections, drawn from primary interviews about his experience of operating and building at the boundary between public and private realms in Barcelona. Unlike many of his contemporaries, the paper argues, Llinàs prioritises shared spaces in a way that highlights the intermediary role that architecture can play between what he calls the nocturnal street of private domains and the diurnal public realm - renouncing the idea of the finished, exact, architectural object.
Llinàs’ career as an architect-educator post-Franco is relevant to this paper’s focus on extracting lessons from his experience of Barcelona’s increasing public/private urban investment policies, leading to the city hosting the 1992 Olympics, and continuing through its renewal and regener- ation projects into the new millennium.
Despite many differences, similarities exist between Barcelona’ post-Olympic renewal process- es, and property-led regeneration across Europe since the late 1990s. Llinàs' trajectory, experiences and stalwart protection of his practice principles throughout this changing context in Barcelona thus provide lessons relevant to international contemporary architecture, development, and critical practice discourse.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 22 Oct 2018
EventMind Land Society: 16th International Conference Arquitectonics Network: Looking for the Human Condition of the Research on Architecture and Urban Design Practices and Theories - ETSAB Escola Tècnica Superior d'Arquitectura de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
Duration: 29 May 201831 May 2018


ConferenceMind Land Society: 16th International Conference Arquitectonics Network
Abbreviated titleArquitectonics Mind Land Society 2018
Internet address


  • architecture
  • Urban design
  • josep llinas
  • Barcelona
  • Public Space
  • critical practice
  • Regeneration
  • Housing


Dive into the research topics of 'Josep Llinàs and the Construct(ion) of Place Meaning in Urban Public Space: A Barcelona Case Study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • Mapping the expanding and fracturing field of architecture

    Golden, S., 16 Feb 2017, Architectural Research Addressing Societal Challenges. Couceiro da Costa, M. J. R., Roseta, F., Couceiro da Costa, S. & Lages, J. P. (eds.). Lisbon, Portugal: Taylor & Francis, Vol. 2. p. 705-712

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    Open Access
    254 Downloads (Pure)

Cite this