عنوان مقاله [English]
The meaning of place is one of the important concepts that has recently received much attention in the fields of architecture and urban planning. The purpose of this study was to provide a new interpretation of different levels regarding the meaning of place based on the role of time factor. Our case study was the Sofeh Mountain Park located in Isfahan. It is an urban public place where different people can attend with a variety of motivations. This study classified different meanings formed in the minds of the park visitors, based on three indexes including “frequency of visits”, “duration of presence”, and “motivation of individuals”. The statistical population of the study included 150 people from different social strata visiting this park. Data were collected through a questionnaire with open- and close-ended questions. Data were analyzed qualitatively and all questionnaires and case interviews were coded separately using content analysis method, and thereby different levels of meaning were extracted based on each visitor’s view. Results indicated that the time or duration of the person’s familiarity with the place was an important factor in the formation of different semantic levels in relation to the place. In the first encounter with the place, therefore, one only perceives the physical and skeletal aspects of the environment. With increasing times of visits and presence in the place, one becomes more interested in the place. At such a level, people interpret the place according to their own feelings, interests, and memories. The third and deepest level of meaning in individuals is a sense of place identity, which is achieved by increasing the length of time of people`s presence in the place. At such a level, the motivation for people to attend the place goes beyond the beauty and their individual feelings and interests, and their perception of the place becomes a transpersonal recognition on an urban scale.