Traffic Nets - Grid Systems
In history, as well as today, traveling and traffic systems developed
naturally, according to geographical, topographical or space-ordering
facts. Roads were built to connect settlements or settlements grew along
existing roads. Forks or crossings arose where necessary or already existing
junctions created new settlements. Cutting a road or traffic usually
generated changes in settling and caused movement.
While medieval european cities grew radial, many urban environments
in modern times (as well as classic forms) were planned, to serve multiple
needs. Two famous examples are Barcelona's Eixample and New York's Manhattan.
In 1859/60 the catalan engineer Ildefons Cerdà built a quarter
in Barcelona called Eixample (expansion) based on equal squares. 1850
he presumed, that every worker would use his own machine for locomotion
and straight and wide roads would be needed.
The „negative“ space surrounding dense built environments
is the only space left for transportation. Streets, veins of a city,
are inevitable in order to supply and to link quarters and buildings.
Crossings act as synapses for exchange of goods and humans. They integrate
and entire global networks. But these links evoke congestions and need
to be organized. Certain interventions like traffic lights or bridges
manage the flow.
In terms to connect greater areas more effective and denser, uniform
traffic systems ensure faster traveling with more flexibility. Only
two geometric, point-symmetric shapes can build entire modular grids
equal nodes: the square and the equilateral triangle.
In order to keep transportation and mobility high-leveled, continuity
in speed and flow must be optimized. Forks and bendings generally reduce
speed and flow, and cause congestion. Speed and flow
through bendings and forks accumulates with the
increment of the angle.
The square grid (Figure 1) connects with 90 degrees
and four directions, the equilateral triangle grid (Figure 2) with
and 6 directions. Within the same area the triangle grid
provides shorter distances and more connections, but at the same time,
more crossings with more collision spots; the square grid
crossing merely has to
manage 4 directions.
Concerning the building space between the rays, the triangle shape shows
disadvantages, as the space usage is less efficient.
In the air the triangle grid shows its strength. By placing the three
(including oncoming traffic 6) directions in the air at different
height levels, crossings will be dissolved. The junctions of the
Skyways run between the main directions and merge to the new path from
top or below.
mailto: Christian Frey @ www.freypark.com