Presentation of the book "Urban Rooms of Sarajevo"

Predstavljanje knjige „Urbane sobe Sarajeva“

Contemporary public spaces represent a challenging topic in the public discourse in the field of architecture and urbanism at the global level, and especially in the context of (post transitional society and the complex history of Sarajevo. In the book "Urban Rooms of Sarajevo", the authors Nermina Zagora and Dina Šamić put forward a thesis on the identity crisis of urban public space in the city. Through a historical analysis of the genesis of public spaces in Sarajevo, the authors re-examine how changes in society's attitudes toward the private/individual and public/collective dichotomy have resulted in many neglected, passive, disorganized, and urban spaces without function and identity.

Using the mapping method, the locations and spatial-urban and socio-cultural attributes of public spaces in the city, such as typology, scale, fencing, accessibility, urban activity and atmosphere, were determined. In this analysis, a special category of spaces was singled out, which in theory are recognized as urban gaps, and are synonymous with gray zones, abandoned, marginalized spaces in the urban fabric. It is in such "ambiguous", transient spaces that the authors recognize the design potential and the chance for urban regeneration of the city. Urban gaps have the possibility of transformation into dynamic, active, small public spaces, which are marked in the book by the term - urban rooms. The authors propose combining design methods and tools of urban design and interior design, and at selected five locations in Sarajevo, simulate the transformation of urban gaps into urban rooms, which simultaneously affirm individual and collective identities. By applying the innovative principles and strategies outlined in the book, such as urban acupuncture, it is possible to improve the urban environment from the inside out. Strategically designed transformations of urban rooms can resonantly contribute to the urban regeneration of the wider city fabric of Sarajevo.

The book will be available in printed form in the libraries of universities in BiH and partner universities abroad. The e-book is available in its entirety on the website of the UNSA Faculty of Architecture.


Authors: Nermina Zagora and Dina Šamić

Reviewers: Markus Schwai, NTNU, Norway and Alessandro Massarente, UNIFE, Italy

Print: Dobra knjiga

Publisher: Faculty of Architecture, University of Sarajevo

Illustrations: Dunja Krvavac

Graphic design: Mirna Ćesović

Proofreading: Juliet Walker

Sponsorship: United Nations Development Program (UNDP) BiH