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Abstract

All places have strong symbolic dimensions and hold specific values for individuals as well as for the collectivity. The urban project, which modifies the built environment or the existing functions of the place in which it intervenes, can transform the meaning of that place especially for those who live there. Such planning projects often attract the opposition of a significant faction of people. In this paper, we propose an innovative approach exploring the symbolical functions and socio-territorial vocations given to places to better understand the degree to which the differences in meaning ascribed to a place targeted by an urban project are likely to explain the popular opposition that often emerges as soon as a planning project is announced.