Week 7 : Times Square Exploration Progress

Hello boys and girls, its the time of the week! So, yeah.


Eras of Times Square

First, I’ve studied and history and development of Times Square since the 1900s and divided into 3 main period.

  1. Early Era (1904)1904
  2. Depression Era (60s-90s)times_square_NYC
  3. Disneyfication Era (Present)tss

Obviously these different eras give different kinds of ambience, surrounding and purpose to the site. During the early era, Times Square was literally the “Centre of Everything” in Manhattan. The intersections became a major “crossroad” which was existed due to the development of transportation, exchange of information and etc. In other words, the square existed to be pure functional to the needs of Manhattan and not as a tourist attraction. For instance, the first electrical billboard was used to deliver updated news of the election at that time.  During the Depression Era, Times Square was considered unsafe and dangerous due to the dissemination of “sex culture” at that time. The surrounding was full with sex shops, pornographic theatre (Peep Shows) and people dealing drugs openly. This directly made Times Square to become a dodgy place. In the 90’s the Mayor, had massive “clean up” at the square and closed every single sex shops and peep shows and pushing the drug dealers to relocate. This process at that time was referred as the “Disneyfication” Process. The mayor’s vision was to liven up the square into a very lively and bright space for the people. The usage of electronic billboards was massively promoted until the whole Times Square zone now requires the buildings to be covered with billboards. In a way, indirectly, the billboards are now act as the facade of Times Square. “Billboard Architecture”. Hence, one of the way for me to represent the drawing is through time.



As for the physical traits of the site, I’ve identified the surrounding buildings and landmarks that are significant. Through time again, I can represent the buildings and the development of the skyline.



Times Square Social Issues

Based on a few interviews that ive read, there are few positive and negative responses to the place.

Why do people love Times Square? :

  • some said it is the capital of the world
  • open-space friendly
  • the bright and neon surroundings
  • cultural centre
  • freedom of not doing anything
  • a place just to feel good

Why do people hate Times Square? :

  • overcrowded with tourists, which will cause human traffic congestion
  • too many people in costume and topless that disturb the people and ask for tips.
  • pedestrian plaza doesnt work anymore due to overcrowding
  • increasing crime rate

and based on these, ive listed top 10 emotions that the people are experiencing in Times Square

  1. Exasperation
  2. Joy
  3. Terror
  4. mortification
  5. anticipation
  6. admiration
  7. pleasure
  8. rage
  9. disgust
  10. relaxation

Drawing Development

As for the drawing, its really hard(surprisingly) for me to find any actual technical/planning drawings of the site. so I’ve desided to reconstruct the site in 3d as close and detail as i could. Im trying to export the 3d models form Google Earth into my modelling software and will probably get the street elevation and other views.







Portfolio Development/Exploration Study Content

Not much of the layout, but those are the contents for the exploration study.



In all, All the elements that ive studied above will be represented and should be related to each other in the drawing to deliver the idea of emotive architecture. i think.


Thank you,



One thought on “Week 7 : Times Square Exploration Progress

  1. Why do you think the emphasis on billboards was so important to improving the experience of Times Square? You need to start making links between spatial qualities and emotional responses to tie your work together. The billboards are a good start but the question of why and how the billboards change the emotional reaction to the space needs to be followed.

    What is the colour coding in your mapping of the buildings and landscapes? Does this assign them to the three time periods you have selected? If so, how does identifying them with a time period tell you something about how they affect emotional responses in the present? What does emerge from your contrasting of time periods is how a landmark and a site of orientation (a cross roads) can become disorientating at the scale of individual experience.

    Through your lists of loves and hates there seems to emerge a theme of the relation of the individual to the crowd. The list of hates all stem from types of or problems arising from inter-relations of people. Crowds are the third category in your investigation which so far looks at tangible and intangible aspects of the site. Would you categories crowds as tangible, intangible, or something else? Your post suggests that you should start to study the movement and distribution of crowds and individuals in Times Square to investigate emotional triggers, as well as the billboards and buildings.

    Make sure that your research is represented in the portfolio.

    This is a good development from your last portfolio but the one page does not suggest how the content will interact with the format. We will look forward to seeing how you develop this for Thursday. We need to see those deductions filled out – what have you deduced?! What have you learned so far about how spaces trigger emotional responses? Be able to tell us this on Tuesday.

Leave a Reply