Building the hotbox dream: another housing development in Western Sydney.
Extreme heat divides people from the environment and from each other. So with the rapid densification of our cities, what kind of legacies are we building for future generations?
The Airds Bradbury residential development has open spaces but these lack the amenities of public parks.
New research shows many good intentions for creating urban environments that promote good health were not carried through. The solutions start with engaging more closely with residents themselves.
The flat white experience is so ubiquitous that it could be anywhere.
mavo from www.shutterstock.com
The ubiquitous cafes across Australian cities attract locals and tourists alike, but surely there's more to thriving neighbourhoods than a flat white.
The mall's inventor, Victor Gruen, envisioned thriving hubs of civic activity, rather than bland, asphalt-enclosed shopping centers. Is his original vision now being realized – or further corrupted?
Diverse bushland and wetlands in urban areas contribute to the health and wellbeing of all residents.
Urban bushland has health benefits beyond being a great place to go for a walk. Planners need to consider these when making decisions about the future of our cities.
We need to find new ways to deal with the complexity of modern cities and make them better.
There are very few approaches that examine all aspects of the complexity of urban design and development. Ergonomics, human factors and sociotechnical systems methods offer a way forward.
Planning policies in many cities advocate higher-density housing for reasons of sustainability and efficiency.
Research suggests stakeholders' understandings of urban consolidation vary. And they often subvert policies to suit their own ends.
While many urban design guidelines include ambience as a required ‘city quality’, few provide ways to achieve it.
Ambience is a result of a whole range of processes and physical objects. We can use a systems approach to examine and describe what needs to be done to achieve such a subjective quality in a street.
The biggest risk to cities during cyclones comes from storm surge and rainfall – all the water has to go somewhere.
Cities would suffer much less damage and avoid the huge financial losses if we designed them to cope with the effects of cyclones.
How does a city shape women’s feelings of safety?
Pamela Salen, XYX Lab, Monash University 2017
Where do women feel safe - or unsafe - in city streets? A new research project has unearthed some disturbing responses.
Design deficiencies that contribute to conflict in public spaces often start at the edges.
Redesigning spaces of conflict starts with creating life on the edges. Geelong offers contrasting examples of city centre spaces: one with problems inherent in its design and a nearby one that works.
Do we really need one each?
Think you couldn't possibly do without your car? There are more options than you might think.
The opera house is raised on a terraced platform, away from the shore like an island amphitheatre.
Terence Wong from www.shutterstock.com
Construction should have stopped once the roofs were erected. Any citizen could then have walked up to the terraced amphitheatre, sat down and gazed back at the country from this shrine to the nation.
How will it fit in? Every new development should consider the existing neighbourhood character.
The Melbourne suburb of Richmond is prime inner-city real estate, but the community is paying a price for redevelopment that jars with the existing neighbourhood.
Footpaths in Japan are built with bumpy guide-strips so vision impaired pedestrians can get around with ease.
From high chairs in public bathrooms to handbag baskets in cafes, Japan is a considerate place. Australia can learn from a society where material culture acts as a reminder to be aware of the needs of others.
A quirk in the planning rules enabled the Primaries Warehouse in Fremantle to be redeveloped as a model of progressive higher-density design.
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.
Apartment layouts at Ritter Strasse 50, initiated by ifau and Jesko Fezer with Heide and Von Beckerath, are highly individualised.
Citizens can switch from being consumers to pioneers who drive new designs for living. The German baugruppe model is a leading example.
More than cluster of people and buildings, urbanity is a concentration of encounters and connections.
We're still in the early days of understanding how cities work. But we do know that creative, healthy and productive cities have certain things in common – and it's all to do with their 'urban DMA'.
Connecting cities should serve all citizens, not just a few.
Illustration via shutterstock.com
Design will make the difference between smart city projects offering great promise or actually reinforcing or even widening the existing gaps in unequal ways their cities serve residents.
Modern life is stressful – here's how to make your local neighbourhood a haven.