15-09-09 // REAL URBANISM
“Call for Submissions”- Poster for MONU #12, March 2009
By Bernd Upmeyer
The term real usually refers to reality, the state of things as they actually exist. But in law, the word real means relating to a thing as distinguished from a person. The new topic of MONU magazine on urbanism will deal with the latter and particularly with real estate. Thus, Real Urbanism should be understood as Real Estate Urbanism and not as Actual or Factual Urbanism.
In law, real estate is defined as a term that encompasses land along with anything permanently affixed to the land, such as buildings, specifically property that is fixed in location. Real estate is often considered synonymous with real property, in contrast with personal property, meaning movable property or any property that can be moved from one location to another.
MONU #12 seeks to explore how people in the real estates business perceive and conceive cities. What do cities look like in the eyes of real estate investors, property managers, and urban developers? What is a good and what is bad city according to real estate agents? This issue tries to illuminate the hidden forces that ultimately establish the physical reality of cities.
But this issue is not meant to be merely polemical and critical of financial forces and economic power that are related to real estate in cities – no Don-Quixotean anti-capitalistic battles shall be fought – but rather attempts will be made to reveal the particular interests of people involved in the real estate sector and their consequences on the built environment. What concerns us most is to put those topics on the agenda and to understand their impacts and dependencies. Nevertheless, radical critical texts are also very welcome.