Public Space: Fights and Fictions

ABSTRACT

Léopold Lambert: State of Emergency Urbanism: From Cairo to Brussels, the Police is the Architect

France is still living under the state of emergency granting extra powers to a police force that, time and again, has proven its antagonism towards the post-colonial population of the French banlieues (suburbs). Belgium followed suit with its heavy policing and systematic suspicion of the Molenbeek municipality in Brussels. This lecture presents several examples of the police’s strategic influence on architecture and public space in Europe as well as in Palestine and Egypt with one question in mind: When the police and the architect become one entity, does this produce the very essence of architecture?