Unplanned & informal settlement Category

Sustainable cities of the future – sketch

Notes for keynote at UK Green Building Council Annual City Summit, Birmingham. 1. Spatial planning & human behaviour implications of sustainability – reduction of transport carbon through shift towards walking, cycling & public transport 2. A massive shift needed in transport + land use planning, urban + landscape design, architecture. Professional inertia. Turning the supertanker. […]

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Let them smoke ciggies because it keeps them calm

“Cul de sac layouts may be the opium of the unwary – seemingly an analgesic against high-density urbanism – but beware the risks of over-indulgence”. Steve Morgan, founder of housebuilder Redrow, attacks high-density urbanism in today’s Building Design. He says: “Build cul de sacs because that’s how people want to live”. This reminds me of some other things I’ve […]

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Teaching urban design – a sketch for a new approach

Sketch… Space Syntax is keen to play a role in initiatives that embed the Space Syntax approach in everyday urban practice. The watchword is “dissemination”. Our aim is to create a professional landscape that uses Space Syntax as an everyday approach to the planning, designing and general governance of places. Here are some of my thoughts […]

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Smart Cities World Expo – speaking notes

Spatial layout influences Human behaviour: 1. Movement 2. Awareness 3. Interaction 4. Transaction. Spatial layout benefits 1. Economy – productivity – innovation – building & campus performance 2. Health – active travel – access to healthcare – building & campus performance 3. Social cohesion – the spatial network creates the social network 4. Safety – property theft – personal attack […]

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Notes for AGI Conference talk: Measure, map, model, make

My slides Great placemaking is a process combining art and science. There is a place for both and indeed a need for both. Two problems. First, urban planning is largely an analogue discipline. Too many diagrams and watercolours. Not enough science. And, when science is present, it is seen as an adjunct, not as a […]

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Ed Glaeser at the American Planning Association

Notes from Prof Ed Glaeser’s keynote at the 2011 American Planning Association Conference in Boston, 12th April 2011 A city’s “innovative density” is provided by its urban connections. Historical urban growth and decline Historically, cities grew by water. As transport costs lowered (now 10% of a century ago) people and production did not need to […]

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Space Syntax & the future of urban planning software

Notes from a lecture given at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy 23rd March 2011 View a summary of the presentation on YouTube Opening comments Good afternoon. I am delighted to have this opportunity to report on my progress as this year’s Lincoln Loeb Fellow. My brief today is in two parts: first, to describe my […]

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Tim Stonor – Minister of Planning for Urbania?

Yesterday I took part in a role play in Dr Mike Hooper’s class on “Urbanization & International Development” at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. The class was divided into three groups and given 20 minutes to prepare proposals for upgrading an informal settlement on land in the centre of an imaginary city, “Urbanopolis”, […]

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Connectivity is only the beginning – networking is the goal

For digital users 2010 was the year to get connected; 2011 will be the year to become networked. It is one thing to buy an iPhone, join Facebook and Twitter, get a blog, friend and follow. It is another to keep it all going. Already, people are being encouraged to unplug. But why unplug when […]

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Millennium Development Goals

MDG 1 Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger MDG 2 Achieve universal primary education MDG 3 Promote gender equality and empower women MDG 4 Reduce child mortality MDG 5 Improve maternal health MDG 6 Combat HIV/AIDS and other diseases MDG 7 Ensure environmental sustainability

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Dharavi – slum for sale

Notes from screening at Harvard GSD The key issue is employment, not housing. Need to retain micro-industry as well as housing. Resident’s comment on high rise housing proposal (but no clear proposal for providing places of work): “Will the oxygen up there fill our stomachs?” Industry generates 750 million dollars per annum. Dharavi therefore as […]

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Connecting the disconnected – how much is enough?

Yesterday evening, Ed Parham gave a talk at the Graduate School of Design on Space Syntax’s work redesigning unplanned settlements in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Despite the really awful weather, which turned Cambridge into a pedestrian sludge, there was a full house. Ed showed how Jeddah’s unplanned settlements share a common spatial property of being locally […]

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Upcoming talk: “Planning the unplanned: An evidence-based approach to design in informal settlements”

Harvard Graduate School of Design, 18th January 2011, 6:30pm With the world population of slum dwellers set to increase to 2 billion over the next 30 years, the need to provide adequate living conditions for the urban poor is recognised as a major challenge. Political and economic pressure to implement improvements quickly, often means that […]

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