The E-Road Network as Actor of Planetary Urbanization: Reconsidering the Trans-European Petroleumscape

The E-Road Network as Actor of Planetary Urbanization: Reconsidering the Trans-European Petroleumscape

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The paper develops a method addressing the role of architects and urban planners in shaping connections between European land-based mobility, cities and landscapes, through the development of spaces aiming to link auto mobility to the everyday experience of European citizens in different countries, adjusting their interventions to local sensibilities. For over half a century, politicians have promoted transportation and transnational mobility for commodities and individuals by planning and funding the E-road network that connects the European continent. This attempt to link the different European nations and overcome their separate plans has reshaped the urban landscape and the territory at large. The construction of a highway system for Europe was already anticipated in 1968. The Declaration on the Construction of Main International Traffic Arteries in 1950 sketched a system that would connect Europe from Scandinavia to Sicily.
The paper examines how urban planners and architects have been key agents in spatializing these politics, establishing a system that is constantly reinforcing itself, making it difficult to implement new types of mobilities and lifestyles and thus hindering the transition to environmental sustainability. Taking into account that the EU and its nations aim to overcome regimes of petroleum-based mobility and associated architectures, the paper aims to show how the land-based transportation of both individuals and commodities in the E-Road network functions as an actor of planetary urbanization, investigating three kinds of nodes within the E-Road network: the nodes encountered on the E-Roads, those to be found at the gates to cities, and the new structures aiming to imitate the urban dimension but proposing a novel articulation of pedestrian and automobile circulation.

Corresponding Author

Marianna Charitonidou

Lecturer ETH Zürich

Author #1:

Marianna Charitonidou

Lecturer ETH Zürich

Author #2:

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Preferred Track

4. Environment Impact Awareness in Urban Developments

Second Preferred Track

6. Urban policies

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