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D

Dance City The dance agency for the north east of England, based in Newcastle upon Tyne.
dancer (Glasgow) A floor or a landing in a tenement building. A three-dancer, for example, is the third floor. A tap-dancer is the top floor (tap meaning top). See also coffin end and single end.
dancer (Glasgow) A floor or a landing in a tenement building. A three-dancer, for example, is the third floor. A tap-dancer is the top floor (tap meaning top). See also coffin end and single end.
DanDaresville A futuristic-looking city. Dan Dare was the hero of the eponymous cartoon strip in the 1950 and ’60s Eagle comic. Example: ‘[Leeds] seems to think it’s Manhattan, or Shanghai, or DanDaresville… [its] skyline is due to bristle with some of the highest residential towers in Europe’ (2006). See also TREEN CITY.
dash for trash Developing an area in a hurry, with consequently poor standards of design. The architect richard rogers warned in 2005 of the danger of this fate for the thames gateway.
datum A line, point or surface used as a reference. Example: 'These buildings create a strong horizontal datum to which new development can respond.'
definition The quality that a space may have by virtue of its boundaries being clearly defined (the distinction between public and private space being easily apparent, for example).
democratic 1 Relating to government by the people. 2 Relating to popular culture; non-elitist. Examples: 'Cultural policy has widened to embrace a broader "more democratic" conception of culture which includes all kinds of everyday social and leisure activities that take place in cities'; 'Gehry's work can be seen as democratic in the sense that Disneyland is democratic, motivated by an intention to entertain and ultimately to sell'; 'There is a potential contradiction between the "democratic" ideas of the Congress of New Urbanism and the élitism of the new urbanist communities'; 'The two objects [a 47-storey office tower and a seven-storey retail building, both 'consciously colourful'] represent something more cheerful. It is democratic architecture against the surroundings of former East Berlin, which was very oppressive' (architect Jan Kaplicky of Future Systems in 2004). 3 Open for public use. Example: 'Bus shelters are the smallest democratic spaces.'
densification area An area, well served by public transport, designated for development of higher density than that existing. The RIBA proposed the concept, conceived by the developer Roger Zogolovitch, in 2003. Such an area would be, the RIBA said, the obverse of a conservation area. Within them, development licences would be offered to existing landowners, permitting the holder to develop their plots at higher density. These licences would be 'building permits' equivalent to planning permission. Licences would take the form of a legal agreement granting the holder consent, subject to compliance with a set of miles and the payment of fees.
deradburnisation

The modification of a radburn layout by reversing the orientation of the houses, so that the fronts become backs, and the backs fronts.

designerism Superfluous, self-conscious design. Example: 'Just how many types of doorknob does the world need? We are oppressed by the culture of designerism.'
designerism Superfluous, self-conscious design.
destination A place where people arrive. Compare origin.
development control The process through which a local authority determines whether (and with what conditions) a proposal for development should be granted planning permission. Compare development management.
development management The Royal Town Planning Institute recommended in 2003 that this term - and a new set of practices - should replace 'development control'. This, explained the RTPI's then president Vincent Goodstadt (2003), would 'allow professional staff time to be focused on decisions that require their skill and judgements rather than on administrative skills'. 'Management' sounded more positive than 'control', the RTPI thought.
different city, the Santa Fe, New Mexico. See city different.
divided highway (US) The UK equivalent is dual carriageway.
Dongtan A planned ‘eco-city’ at the mouth of the Yangtse river in China, designed to do no appreciable damage to the earth’s environment. The project was led initially by the engineer PETER HEAD.
drag A street or road. The term is common in North America. It was current in England in the nineteenth century, and is now used again in the UK. See main drag.
drong (Wessex) A narrow passage.
dual carriageway (UK) The US equivalent is divided highway.
Dublin, kick up a (Glasgow) To make a fuss.
dunny (Australia) An outdoor toilet.
dwell time The length of time a train, bus or other vehicle waits at a station or stop.
dymaxion A prototype aluminium bodied 10-seater, three-wheeled car designed by buckminster fuller in the 1930s. Jonathan Glancey (2003) notes that Fuller made all sorts of fantastic claims for it, 'but although it rode well in a straight line, the Dymaxion shied away from tricky things, like bends'.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

 

As an architect, if I had no economic or social limitations, I’d solve all my problems with one-story buildings.
Minoru Yamasaki , architect of the World Trade Center

   
illustration from the Dictionary of Urbanism