chapter  12
8 Pages

Streets, lanes and footpaths

Our movement through towns is normally along streets and roads, and hence our perception of the quality of place is shaped by what we see from them. Anybody intent upon exploring cities through the freehand sketch should, therefore, concentrate upon the routes people normally take. These vary from grand streets to alleyways and pedestrian footpaths, and each has its distinctive character. The different types of city route can be categorised as follows:

• street: a relatively formal route lined by continuous frontages of buildings;

• boulevard: a grander version of the street, often containing trees planted in parallel rows, and sometimes with a central reservation;

• road: an informal car-dominated route generally of a suburban nature;

• lane: an access route often serving the rear of properties and frequently running parallel to a street;

• alleyway: a narrow route, often a service corridor originally constructed for the movement of carts;

• footpath: a pedestrian-scale route between buildings, often an ancient right of way and known by a variety of local names such as a ‘loke’ in Norfolk or ‘pend’ in Edinburgh.