URBAN DESIGN International

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 36–54 | Cite as

Preserving the cultural identity of Chinese cities in urban design through a typomorphological approach

Original Article


This paper analyses the historical process of transformation of the urban blocks, plots and building fabrics in Suzhou, China from the tenth century to the present day using a typomorphological approach, and offers some design suggestions for urban designers and policy-makers based on the examination of the local context. The study aims to propose the western typormorphological concept in Chinese urban design, to maintain local cultural identity in an era of rapid globalisation. The study reveals that typormorphology is an effective tool to solve the current problems in urban developments, and should be adopted in both the urban analysis and urban design of Chinese cities.


typomorphology urban blocks Chinese urban forms urban design 


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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ArchitectureUniversity of StrathclydeGlasgowUK

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