Sec. 8 – Architectural Character


        The architectural character is an essential feature of a building that describes its purpose and utility, and a notable expression of all those properties that distinguish one building from the others. Character refers to all visual and physical aspects, such as various aesthetic components (symmetry, composition, contrast, unity and scale), but also of the function, materials, technology of construction and various aspects of building’s site and environment. All together feature the final visual effect; architectural character makes the building unique and provides its identity.

        All styles of architecture are characterised by features that make a building notable or historically identifiable. Those characteristics are visual appearance, building materials, structures, construction methods, form, regional character, and historical period. The main features of modernism are the simplicity of form, functionality, clear structure, the truth of materials, and the absence of ornamentation.     

        The identity of the space and also neighbourhood character consists of a set of characteristics that make an area recognisable and unique. The essential features that create the identity of the space are natural environment and local physical conditions, together with all perceptible human interventions in the area. Open public spaces (streets, squares, parks), the relationship between open public spaces and buildings, the way the buildings are sited in the area and the relationships between them, the architectural character of buildings located in the area, their size and height, are some of them.

        For any neighbourhood, it is essential to remain distinct from the others and to retain its own identity and character.