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Meeting the challenges of informal settlements, such as this one in Caracas, Venezuela, calls for integrated approaches that cut across urban scales and disciplines. Hesam Kamalipour

When planning falls short: the challenges of informal settlements

Informal settlements are often undocumented or hidden on official maps, but they house about a billion people worldwide. Their existence demands a more sophisticated approach to urban development.
The draft regional plan, ShapingSEQ, released by Queensland Deputy Premier Jackie Trad, has been influenced by ‘stakeholders’ rather than representative community input. Twitter

ShapingSEQ regional plan gives ‘stakeholders’ a bigger say than citizens

The draft plan for Southeast Queensland largely takes a 'provide land for the predicted demand' approach, which assumes regional planning is a type of technical process best left to the experts.
Think of all the resources needed to transform Shenzhen, a fishing town 35 years ago, into a megacity of more than 10 million people. Wikimedia Commons

Our cities need to go on a resource diet

Our cities need to become much more efficient not just to conserve precious resources but to improve the economy, wellbeing and resilience to environmental change and disasters.
Regulating for live/work spaces in San Francisco has enabled many new housing types to develop. Andréanne Doyon

Reinventing density: bridging the live-work divide

Changes in how we live and work call into question current planning regulations relating to mixed-use development.
A quirk in the planning rules enabled the Primaries Warehouse in Fremantle to be redeveloped as a model of progressive higher-density design. Stuart Smith/Panoramio

Reinventing density: bending the rules can help stop urban sprawl

Exceptional projects can emerge when regulations are sensibly relaxed due to context. A Fremantle project is a model of progressive higher-density possibilities resulting from flexible planning rules.
The Collective Old Oak co-living block in London has more than 500 apartments with bedrooms and bathrooms. All other spaces are shared. David Hawgood/Geograph

Reinventing density: co-living, the second domestic revolution

While some forms of co-living seek to match modern lifestyles and a desire to downsize, other profit-driven models simply exploit a lack of affordable housing alternatives.

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