Shifting the threshold of public space in UK and Algeria during Covid-19 Pandemic

Barbora Foerster, Jose Antonio Lara Hernandez, Mohamed Yazid Khemri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The on-going Covid-19 pandemic started to spread in late January 2020 in Europe and in the Mediterranean Region and led to a partial lockdown from mid March on. Algiers and Portsmouth have been selected as case studies to observe how the lockdown challenged dramatically the perception of public space thresholds between private, semi-private and public conditions. The consequential paradigms of social distancing have also contributed to the augmentation of the public space now swinging between digital and analogue possibilities. In opposition to the wide range of possibilities in everyday life, being subject to restricted spatial conditions, the current situation leads to new challenges, on a cognitive level: the resulting change in the perception of proximity and distance, indoor and outdoor, implies an expanded use of both spaces. External private space of the houses became as many opportunities of colonisation of private by new form (sometime also old ones) of public and semi-public appropriation: trade activities as well as a meeting point for public celebrations.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Journal of Public Space
Publication statusAccepted for publication - 2 Jul 2020


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