Archive for the ‘Urban Planning and Design’ Category

March 21 2014

Up-Cycled Art in Public Spaces: Cork City, Ireland

March 21st, 2014Posted by 

Up-cycling is the process of turning waste material or old products into new materials and products of better quality or for better environmental value. In these recessionary times, there has never been greater appeal towards reuse and recycling. People’s views towards these terms are changing. There are already a number of companies and websites that are promoting the […]

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March 19 2014

The Creation of the Italian Commune: Architecture as a Tool of Politics

March 19th, 2014Posted by 

Out of the darkness of the Middle-Ages, helped by the extreme economic power of commerce, and taking advantage of the turbulence caused by the constant fight for control between the church and the Holy Roman Empire, there emerged in Italy an urban form forgotten since Antiquity: the city-state. These states, also known as Communes, gained […]

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March 19 2014

Interacting with our Cities Through Exercise: Student Ideas from Nantes, Pays de la Loire, France

March 19th, 2014Posted by 

Encouraging individuals to be active isn’t a new idea. For good health, civic participation, and a sense of camaraderie, the benefits of sports and exercise are self-evident. Therefore, it is not surprising that physical activity has become a political concern for cities that are catching on to the trend and offering high-quality sporting facilities. However, […]

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March 18 2014

The Reasoning Behind the Washington, D.C. Height Act

March 18th, 2014Posted by 

There is a piece of local lore circulating around Washington, D.C., attempting to explain why the city is so short. The myth claims that developers have been prevented from building up because it is inscribed somewhere that the Washington Monument and US Capitol must be the tallest structures in the city. However, the real reasoning […]

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March 14 2014

Madison’s Edgewater Hotel Redevelopment Nearing Completion

March 14th, 2014Posted by 

Madison’s downtown is located on an isthmus and, therefore, has a plethora of lakefront access and housing. The two lakes provide a venue for boaters, water-skiers, ice skaters, and fishermen, and they attract day-trippers from all over southern Wisconsin. Arguably, the most historic lakefront street is Langdon Street - only a few blocks from the state capitol […]

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March 14 2014

“Hatches, Matches, and Dispatches” Building of Kenya Continues to Stand

March 14th, 2014Posted by 

A city may start as a few shops, a road junction or even a railway station. The City of Nairobi is no exception. Starting as a railway headquarters in a swampy area, it has grown to a huge cosmopolitan concrete jungle. The historical growth and initial urban design of the city can be appreciated through […]

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March 14 2014

The Galataport Project and the Transformation of Karakoy in Istanbul, Turkey

March 14th, 2014Posted by 

In the shadow of the recently opened Marmaray Sirkeci station, there lies Karakoy, with generous speculation surrounding the potential success of the Galataport Project. The Galataport Project is a cruise project which includes the development of an art museum, hotels, restaurants, bars, fast food joints, souvenir shops, shopping centers, office spaces, exhibition and fair areas […]

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March 12 2014

The Economics of Gentrification in Washington, D.C.

March 12th, 2014Posted by 

This past decade has seen Washington, DC host one of the most rapid transformations in the United States. Once a city in decline, known for crime and plagued by disinvestment and poor governance, a quick look at the District’s skyline will tell you that much of that is no longer the case. With forty-seven cranes […]

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March 12 2014

Industrial Mills of Jones Falls Redeveloped for a New Baltimore

March 12th, 2014Posted by 

My previous blog discussed the chronic undercrowding in the City of Baltimore and the current plans to reverse it by charming homebuyers with reduced property tax rates. The City has also been charming developers of the once abandoned stone mills clustered around Jones Falls. The lure is still tax related, but this time in the […]

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March 12 2014

Top 10 Job Boards for Urban Planners

March 12th, 2014Posted by 

If you love cities and want to make them better, stay right where you are. Global Site Plans searched through the web to find the best sources for urban planning job listings. We then used Alexa International Rankings to compile our list and present you, the reader, with the Top 10 Job Boards for Urban […]

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March 11 2014

Nairobi Old Estates: A Glance at the Ofafa Jericho Eastlands

March 11th, 2014Posted by 

The City of Nairobi owes its development to the Kenya to Uganda Railway project, initiated by the colonialists in 1896. The railway ran from the coastal town of Mombasa to Kenya’s neighbor country Uganda. The town was then demarcated around 1905 through racial segregation and land was designated to different races; the Europeans, Indians, and […]

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March 10 2014

Book Review: ‘Rebel Cities’ by David Harvey

March 10th, 2014Posted by 

David Harvey is unabashedly political in his book Rebel Cities, published in 2012. He roots urban planning firmly in the realm of human rights and draws a distinct ‘line in the sand’ between cities which honor the rights of its citizens and those which have been ‘bought out’ by greater powers.   “The results of […]

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March 07 2014

Kifissos & Ilissos Rivers: A Tale of Two Rivers in Athens, Greece

March 7th, 2014Posted by 

Imagine how different Athens, Greece would be, if there was a river, or two, complementing the urban environment. “But there is one!” some might say, there is Kifissos River, even though it may not be like the River Thames in London or the Seine, Paris. Kifissos River flows through the Athenian Basin. Various archaeological findings […]

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March 07 2014

Taking a Stroll Through Old Montreal: Is it Merely a Seasonal Hotspot?

March 7th, 2014Posted by 

A popular tourist destination, Old Montreal and the Old Port have gained popularity amongst locals in recent years, as seen by an increase in both residents and businesses. Settled in 1642, it is now home to historical landmarks and museums, government buildings, restaurants, bars and clubs, art galleries and souvenir shops. During the period of […]

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March 07 2014

A Significant Problem: Lack of Public Libraries in Istanbul

March 7th, 2014Posted by 

In an age with the digitalization of libraries, one still looks for a cozy place to wonder around the shelves of millions of different stories. When was the last time a hand from the fifteenth century grasped onto your shoulder in the dead of silence? Or when was it last that you spaced out within […]

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March 06 2014

Why Have a Car When You Have Snow? Getting Around in Wengen, Switzerland

March 6th, 2014Posted by 

For some people, imagining a life without cars is impossible or just unrealistic given their dependence and lack of other transit options; but alternative urban planning schemes for transportation can help places function better without the automobile. Some of the best examples can be found in small sized towns, but a city doesn’t have to […]

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March 06 2014

Stuck in Place: The Aging Infrastructure of Washington D.C.

March 6th, 2014Posted by 

Manholes – like the one shown above – are a gateway into a labyrinth of unseen infrastructure that lies underneath every city. It is the architecture of the city; not in its most recognized form, but in its most essential. Few people notice it as they engage in their daily routines. However, this network of […]

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March 05 2014

Sustainable Development: 100% Self-sufficient Buildings in Grenoble, Rhône-Alpes, France

March 5th, 2014Posted by 

After having covered some rather outrageous projects in this blog, let’s focus on a more realistic undertaking. The project in question is a partnership for research and development that was signed in January by Bouygues Construction and the city of Grenoble ordering the construction of a block of multi-unit apartment buildings. This experimental project, set […]

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March 05 2014

The Great Local vs. Chain Store Debate, as seen from Somerville, MA

March 5th, 2014Posted by 

It’s Sunday morning in Union Square, Somerville, located some twenty minutes by bus from downtown Boston. Should I get breakfast at Dunkin’ Donuts, or at Union Square Donuts, which has hazelnut donuts? Should I get groceries at Target, or at Capone, a local deli? Should I get my prescription filled at Rite Aid or at….then […]

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March 04 2014

Cork City, Ireland’s English Market Stands the Test of Time

March 4th, 2014Posted by 

Prior to the English Market’s construction there were several informal places for trading food around Cork City, but there was little regulation. Thus it was thought that a centrally located, regularly-held market best suited the town’s people at that time. Over the past 228 years since, the market has been a reflection of the social, […]

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