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Journal of Planning Education and Research (1989)
Journal of Planning Education and Research (2015)
Although informality is typically associated with developing countries, this article argues that informal activities are an integral part of U.S. cities and should be addressed in planning curricula. It focuses on planning education and suggests a possible course, which includes a seminar covering academic literature on informality in both developing and developed countries, and fieldwork-based, case study research by students. It also suggests that the course can be an important avenue for students to understand inequality and poverty and an excellent method for preparing them to think about institutions and regulations in complex and sophisticated ways.
The Town Planning Review (1996)
Planning issues for urban waterfront Redevelopment projects are examined in this paper, based upon case studies in New York, London, Boston and Toronto. The research programme was based upon over 100 interviews with key actors in the four cities. The paper is oriented towards practical problems in the implementation of planning. It generally considers the perspective of the redevelopment agency to consider waterfront planning and development techniques. The specific issues which are addressed include changing the waterfront's image, improving accessibility and controlling the quality of the physical environment. An incremental approach to implementation is recommended, with emphasis upon controlling the quality of the public realm and the role of urban design guidelines to guide private development.
Children, Youth and Environments (2008)
In a research project carried out in various neighborhoods in Stockholm, Sweden, we have developed a method for facilitating children’s influence on spatial planning. Our goal was to construct a vehicle for communication that could work in practice for both children and teachers as well as for planners. The method uses computerized GIS maps—a common tool in spatial planning. With little assistance, 10- to 12-year-old children map their routes and special places, mark activities and write comments. Teachers can also map routes and places used for education. The results have proved reliable and accessible by planners. Use of the mapping method within the school curriculum and in the planning process is broadly discussed in the paper.
Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy (2013)
Battles over public space involve conflicts of values that express themselves in planning policies as well as the built environment. However, the dominant conceptions of public space in planning practice and the academic literature support a limited range of those values. I argue that conceptions based on openness and accessibility play into a particular construction of public life that emphasises casual interactions and downplays purposive, political ones. Following a conceptual analysis of the public–private distinction, the paper offers a novel, threefold account of public space; argues that democracy requires a particular kind of publicness not recognised by the commonly accepted definition; and deploys a simple content analysis to highlight the conceptual emphases and absences in planning policy in the political heart of London. I argue that some advocates of public space are unwittingly supporting restrictive planning and design practices that limit important kinds of democratic expression.
Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (1986)
A medium-density planned neighborhood designed for a centrally located piece of urban land in the 1970s invoked some specific social-mix targets for the residential population of some 850 dwelling units. The site plan was developed in accordance with explicit planning principles derived from the Pattern Language by C. Alexander et al. A postoccupancy evaluation of residents' status, attitudes, and behaviors suggests that the design of a successful environment for a socioeconomic population mix involves a delicate balance between privacy and community. Such a balance is more complex and requires more careful design and more subtle innovation than the simple "if-then" logic of the Patterns used in planning this neighborhood.
City & Society (2008)
Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in post-unification Berlin, this article examines the re-articulation of the problematic of “the social” in city planning. It juxtaposes the contrasting visions of city planners and youth workers for Alexanderplatz, a controversial square in Berlin’s eastern centre. I argue that the notion of “robustness” is helpful in understanding an important contemporary shift in thinking about planning and the social. In a sense, both planners and youth workers accused each other of taking insufficient notice of “the social.” While planners spoke of robustness as a technical, economic and aesthetic quality to which public space needs to aspire, the youth workers’ vision for Alexanderplatz was a proposal for a kind of “social” robustness where the social is, quite literally, built into the urban design. These ethnographic observations need to be understood in a context where city planning has been one of the most critical domains in which the tensions provoked by German unification are played out. Taking such socio-cultural specificities into account will lead to a more nuanced understanding of forms of neoliberal city
Journal of Planning Education and Research (1993)
The development of downtown public space has been increasingly defined by agreements negotiated between the public and private sectors. In the last decades the majority of downtown public space has occurred in the form of urban plazas, built as integral parts of privately owned office and retail complexes. In this paper we document the private production of public open space in the downtown areas of Los Angeles and San Francisco - two cities that have used distinctively different policy approaches in forming public-private partnerships. We examine how the process of public open space creation is affected by the culture of planning and development, and discuss similarities and differences in the imagery and form of plazas in the two cities. It is found that urban plazas are the reflection of a market-driven urbanism. As such they are quite homoge- neous in their form despite differences in the planning style and development process encountered in the two California cities.
Journal of Urban Design (1996)
This two-part essay analyses the changing nature of the public realm in the evolving edge of the American metropolis and the implications for urban design and planning. Many forces are changing the form and use of public space in cities--concerns for safety and liveability, increasing dependence on telecommunications, decline in public revenues, the privatization of many amenities, and an increasingly pluralist society. The essay specifically focuses on the historical influence of planning and design practices on suburban form: density levels, land use and zoning patterns, suburban layouts and streetscapes. Field surveys and morphological analyses of urban edge patterns from the San Francisco Bay area document the current state of the suburban public realm. The second part of the essay will examine how physical planning can contribute to restoring a more vibrant public realm amidst raging debates over its changing nature and relevance.
Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (2013)
This study compares community-park design and residents' perceptions of safety in two subdivision communities in The Woodlands, Texas. The communities were built following two different planning approaches—the ecological approach and the conventional approach. Surveys have shown that residents generally feel safer in community parks built according to the latter approach. Using landscape metrics and home-to-park proximity indicators, we examine how different planning approaches affect park design and, as a result, influence residents' perceptions of safety. We cross-validated the results with survey studies conducted over several years. The study findings suggest that park location, spatial configuration of woody vegetation, and management of understory can be important design considerations that impact residents' perceived levels of safety. Park designers and managers should also consider providing parks that meet diverse needs and balance the requirements of ecological preservation, aesthetics, and cultural preference.
Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (1997)
Previous research has revealed important differences in architectural evaluation between design professionals and the lay public, with such differences commonly assumed to be the result of professional education. However, few attempts have been made to determine the actual source of such differences, and there is little evidence that these are actually the result of training or education. This paper summarizes the findings of a study which set out to investigate these issues, specifically focusing on differences in architectural interpretation between the lay public, planning students, and practicing planning professionals, a group often neglected in studies of environmental aesthetics. These interpretations were examined utilizing multiple sorting and ranking procedures, with the respondents asked to sort fifteen examples of contemporary architecture according to criteria of their own choice. The results revealed both commonalities and differences in evaluation between the various groups, with the differences particularly pronounced between planners and the public. The results lend support to the view that education is a key factor in the acquisition of aesthetic values and also suggest that training encourages homogeneity of aesthetic tastes. This study thus corroborates and expands the findings of studies by other researchers by suggesting that there are significant relationships between expertise, attitude, and interpretation which may have important implications for planning practice.
Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design (2016)
By studying the mathematical properties of metrics, we identify three fundamental characteristics of distance, which are optimality, detour and break. In this paper, we explore the implications of these properties for transport planning, urbanism and spatial planning. We state that distances contain the idea of optimum and that any distance is associated to a search for optimisation. Pedestrian movements obey this principle and sometimes depart from designed routes. Local suboptimality conveyed by public transport maps has to be corrected by interventions on public space to relieve the load on central parts of networks. The second principle we state is that detour in distances is most often a means to optimise movement. Fast transport systems generate most of the detour observed in geographical spaces at regional scale. This is why detour has to be taken into account in regional transport policies. The third statement is that breaks in movement contribute to optimising distances. Benches, cafe´s, pieces of art, railway stations are examples of the urban break. These facilities of break represent an urban paradox: they organise the possibility of a break, of a waste of time in a trip, and they also contribute to optimising distances in a wider
network. In that sense, break should be considered as a relevant principle for the design of urban space in order to support a pedestrian-oriented urban form.
Architectural Science Review (2016)
There is a revolution underway in the interface between architecture and planning. Very recent research is enabling a novel understanding of the neuroscience behind how people perceive and experience the built environment. One such work, Cognitive Architecture: Designing for How We Respond to the Built Environment (Sussman, Ann, and Justin B. Hollander. 2015. New York: Routledge), argues for a set of testable principles for architecture and planning practice. Its overall line of investigation is that certain design characteristics of the built environment can influence brain wave production. Specifically, the interest lies in whether the presence of features suggestive of Cognitive Architecture is associated with certain brain responses. This working paper presents the results of a pilot study into this question, discusses technical issues and limitations and provides suggestions for future research avenues.
Landscape and Urban Planning (2007)
Four urban public spaces, representing various designs and microclimates, were investigated in Gothenburg, Sweden, in order to estimate how weather and microclimate affect people in urban outdoor environments. The research strategy was both multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary and included scientists from three disciplines: architecture, climatology and psychology. The project is based on common case studies carried out during four seasons, including measurements of meteorological variables, interviews and observations of human activity at each place. Multiple regression analysis of meteorological and behavioural data showed that air temperature, wind speed and clearness index (cloud cover) have a significant influence on people’s assessments of the weather, place perceptions and place-related attendance. The results support the arguments in favour of employing climate sensitive planning in future urban design and planning projects, as the physical component of a place can be designed to influence the site-specific microclimate and consequently people’s place-related attendance, perceptions and emotions.
International Journal of Urban and Regional Research (2008)
Mega-projects are usually analyzed as state-led public–private partnerships and iconic architecture aiming at branding the city and attracting tourists and global investors. This article adopts a different approach, analyzing the construction of Helsinki's Kamppi mega-project in terms of the politics of property as a process of creating and distributing rights –– property rights, development rights and use rights. Although the Kamppi project did not follow ordinary planning regulations, this did not mean that there was no regulation; on the contrary, there was more than usual, but through contracts rather than planning. Regulation through contracts denied citizens any voice and negated the celebrated provision for participation in Finland's reformed planning legislation. The Kamppi contracts also show that property rights are negotiated, alienated, compensated, struggled over and constructed. Citizens protested against the demolition of historic buildings, but overlooked the series of Kamppi contracts, which limited their rights and introduced a whole new system in which use rights are connected to ownership. Finally, the long duration of the Kamppi project meant that many people also overlooked the privatization of formerly public space.
Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design (2016)
Visiting urban parks regularly can provide significant physical and mental health benefits for children and teenagers, but these benefits are tempered by park quality, amenities, maintenance, and safety. Therefore, planning and public health scholars have developed instruments to measure park quality, but most of these tools require costly and time consuming field surveys and only a handful focus specifically on youth. We rectify these issues by developing the QUality INdex of Parks for Youth (QUINPY) based on a robust literature review of studies on young people’s park visitation habits and an extensive validation process by academic and professional experts. Importantly, the QUINPY relies on publicly available geospatial data to measure park quality. We then successfully pilot test the QUINPY in Denver and New York City. We believe that park agencies, planning consultants, researchers, and nonprofits aiming to assess park quality will find this tool useful. The QUINPY is particularly promising given the increasing amount of publicly available geospatial data and other recent advancements in geospatial science.
Landscape: Magazine of Human Geography (1960)
Journal of Planning Education and Research (2005)
While research on business improvement districts (BIDs) has considered the constraints BIDs can place on the negotiation of public space and citizenship, little work has focused on the process of establishing neighborhood BIDs (NBIDs), and few scholars have examined perceptions of public space held by actual neighborhood constituents. This article analyzes a participatory mapping project and messages on a neighborhood e-mail list to compare the visions of place expressed by disempowered community members and by an NBID proposal. Our analysis illuminates how local power relations and inequalities can become inscribed in urban planning projects like NBIDs.
Environment and Behavior (2008)
Creating “community” has long been a goal of urban planners. Although such rhetoric abounds in planning circles, what it all means is unclear. In this article, the authors review the community psychology and urban plan- ning literature, defining sense of community within the context of how the built environment might facilitate or impede it. They then present their research, which tests the effects of “main street” on sense of community in four San Francisco neighborhoods. Results indicate that respondents in neighborhoods exhibiting characteristics of a main street town (Bernal Heights and West Portal) have significantly higher sense of community than do respondents from a high-density neighborhood (Nob Hill) and from a more suburban-style city neighborhood (Sunset).
Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (1993)
Since the early 1900's when internal open spaces became common features of English new towns and American subdivisions patterned after Radburn, planners have assumed that internal parks are desirable features in subdivision planning. However, developers in the United States have in general failed to include open spaces within new subdivisions, thus raising questions about their real economic benefits. This paper examines those benefits within the context of a Radburn-style subdivision in Dallas. Using survey and sales data, the results indicate that homeowners value the open space - both those who live directly on the internal greenbelts and those who do not. However, where the open space causes a reduction in private backyard space, homeowners do not appear to value public open space as highly as private space.