The street, as a public space, defines the common and exceptional elements of the city’s urban layout. The various declinations of forms, names and meanings of streets reflect different geographies and cultures that nevertheless share common characteristics.

Street, in Portuguese, is translated with the word rua. According to the first dictionary of the Portuguese language (Bluteau, 1712-1728), rua derives from the Greek ruo with the same meaning as the Latin flŭo: a stream of water “because through the streets runs the rainwater, that falls from the roofs (…) also the people run the streets, and each one of them is a stream of people (...).” Bluteau finally refers that some etymologists state that the word rua has the same Latin root as the word ruga, which means wrinkle: “a line, or a groove, caused by the time”. Rua therefore congregates the notions of motion and line, in a single word.

Recognising the street as a line produced by the effects of time on the skin of the city, as a wrinkle testify the passage of years, frames City Street5 – The Time of Streets: Incisions, overlaps and rhythms. Streets are the physical repository of the polis memory, an urban object in transformation over time, resulting from social and political evolutions that shape the form of the city, the urbs. Reading the incisions and the overlaps of time in the urban fabric, allows us to decode the polis eventum, which have contributed to form the present stratum urbanum. Understanding the cycles and rhythms that sculpt the wrinkles of the city, remains essential to imagine and design the future of streets.

City Street5 welcomes proposals from different contexts, methodological approaches and disciplinary fields, that relate to the timeless importance of streets on the construction of the city as a framework for human life.

We are happy to receive you in Lisboa in 2022!