Narratives for an Extended Urban Design: Urban Hacking and Appropriation in La Chimba Neighborhood

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Martín Tironi


The last years have witnessed the development of a questioning of the top-down character in urban planning and the inefficiencies sometimes evidenced by bureaucratic and centralized programs when dealing with the problems of the city. Consequently, there are today different terms (“open-source urban planning”, “do-it-yourself urban planning”, “smart citizens”, “participative urban planning”, “tactic urban planning”, etc.) to refer to more distributed, located and temporary forms of urban design. This scenario has led several authors to rethink the social, material and political conditions for a citizens’ urban planning that can bring into existence the right to a city and to the self-production of urban infrastructures. Starting from an urban hacking project with homeless persons in La Chimba neighborhood, this article explores the possibilities of this type of interventions, particularly in respect to the redistribution of abilities between the experts and the lay person, between designer and non-designer. The description of the different prototyping phases of the project evidence a move from a user-centered design to a collaborative end extended design, where those affected are no longer treated as mere users, but start to become co-designers and visualizers of their own lives.

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How to Cite
Tironi, M. (2016). Narratives for an Extended Urban Design: Urban Hacking and Appropriation in La Chimba Neighborhood. Diseña, (10), 92–105.
Original articles
Author Biography

Martín Tironi, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, School of Design

Sociologist, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Master in Sociology, Université Paris-Sorbonne V. PhD, Centre de Sociologie de l’Innovation (CSI), Ecole des Mines de Paris. Post-Doctorate CSI, Ecole des Mines de Paris. Researcher and professor, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile School of Design. Investigator in charge of FONDECYT Project Nº 11140042.


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