Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Aviopolis Part 2

Here are some more notes from a book I recently read while researching for my own omnitopia project.

"You may not need to speak the language of the country to get around; but you do need to know the techno-cultural dialect of English -- the international language of the airport. "(p. 31)

"The airport represents 'laboratory conditions' for thinking through the techno-cultural processes and systems of global movement." (p. 38)

"Colonialism reorganised [sic] geographical space into sovereign zones of ideological and economic allegiances. Place became terra nullius long ago, wiped of indigenous particularities and incorporated into a totalising [sic] space of urgent global improvement." (p. 39)

"Sydney Airport . . . has been in continuous operation since 1920, developing from a modest airstrip in the middle of a swamp-lined paddock on the northern shore of botany Bay. For 80 years this airport has been 'terraforming' its environs, sucking highways and rail corridors towards it, re-zoning its surrounding suburbs, flattening houses and changing the geography of the city around it." (p. 41)

"Cairo Airport may look nothing like Singapore's Changi Airport, but its information is the same -- it is designed to process mobility. It is a self-renewing machine that 'refreshes' after each take-off and landing. Planes download passengers, baggage, cargo, excreta, and rubbish, and, then, upload passengers, baggage, cargo, fuel, food and packaged gadgets. The airport propels and regulates direction and flow. The sky is turned into bandwidth as plans move along specified air corridors." (p. 43)

"Within the glass groundscrapers that dominate contemporary airport design, only our thoughts move in private. Our baggage, our bodies and our movements are all part of an all-encompassing spectacle. Visible to everybody, we disappear into the multiple matrices of the airport." (p. 78)

All quotes from:

Fuller, G. & Harley, R. (2004). Aviopolis: A book about airports. London: Black Dog Publishing Limited.

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