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Pattern: Progressive framework definition

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Part of a 5-fold Pattern Language.
Subsequently published in Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential (1986)

Pattern template

In order to accommodate subtle design adaptations as the need for them becomes clear, the framework should be conceived from the start as globally complete although tentative in its definition. In subsequent construction phases, as further elements are woven into the framework, it acquires increasing definition up to the final phase at which its full structural integrity is achieved.

Physical Buildings should be uniquely adapted to individual needs and sites. The plans should therefore be rather loose and fluid in order to accommodate those subtleties as the need for them emerges. The building should not be thought of as assembled from components but rather as being woven from a structure which starts out globally complete, but flimsy. It is gradually made stiffer, whilst still somewhat flimsy, until it is made completely stiff and strong in the final construction phase. Although the building goes from flimsy to strong, the actual materials added go from the strongest and stiffest to the less stiff, until finally fluid materials are added. In this way each new material is more adaptable, more flexible, more capable of coping with variations (and earlier mistakes) than the last. This can be achieved by constructing a soft skin framework and filling it with a compressive fill.

Broader Appropriate construction elements; Efficient enclosure of spaces with minimal structural distinctions; Congruence between spaces defined by the framework and spaces defined by the processes within it.

Narrower Perimeter continuity; Inter-level connections; Integration superstructure; Distortion resistant boundaries; #P1225; Level generation of minimum tension; Overview sites from integrative superstructure; Primary inter-level connections at transitions in boundary orientation.

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