Articles on city planning

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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.
Upper Coomera is one of those fast-growing fringe suburbs that are hotter because of tightly packed housing with less greenery. Daryl Jones/www.ozaerial.com.au/

Out in the heat: why poorer suburbs are more at risk in warming cities

Recently published research has found that the concentration of poorer people in hotter places is a real problem for cities' capacity to cope with climate change.
Melbourne is being transformed by high-rise apartments, with some even being purpose-built for the Airbnb market. Jorge Láscar/flickr

How Airbnb is reshaping our cities

If the sharing economy is here to stay, planners and designers must respond with imagination to spread the positive effects of the tourism economy for the benefit of residents as well as tourists.
The apartheid government built universities for black students far from major cities or safe routes. Shutterstock

How the legacy of apartheid design is making students’ lives unsafe

The system of apartheid is long gone. But its legacy of poor funding for historically black universities - and of planning that banished black universities to cities' margins - remains.
Opponents of projects are often scorned as NIMBYs, but active citizenship and local consultation are key elements in creating a city that works well for as many people as possible. Teresa Parker/AAP

30-minute city’? Not in my backyard! Smart Cities Plan must let people have their say

Cities are home to many different people who will not always agree. We need to learn to embrace public debate as an ongoing, constructive process for working through diverse views and values.
The EVA Lanxmeer development in the Netherlands provides a model for how to incorporate green infrastructure in all aspects of the planning process. Tony Matthews

Here’s how green infrastructure can easily be added to the urban planning toolkit

Green infrastructure can be delivered relatively easily using existing planning processes. The main obstacle could be psychological: planners are wary of disruption to embedded practices.
Zaha Hadid’s ongoing Australian projects and draft designs will attract plenty of attention in the future. London Aquatics Centre, designed by Zaha Hadid. Artur Salisz

Will the death of ‘starchitect’ Zaha Hadid bring life to more of her designs?

Celebrated architect Zaha Hadid, who died last week, had three projects on the go in Australia. Will there be a surge of interest in her work - as has happened to other architects who have died prematurely?
One of the architects of 443 Queen Street says: ‘The Queenslander – elevated on stilts and open to natural ventilation – was an inspiration for the tower’. Artist's Impression

How can a city keep its character if its landmark views aren’t protected?

Landmarks identify and define cities. Town-planning instruments should protect these landmarks from new development that does not respect the setting.
The shimmer of a heat mirage shows how a hard road surface increases urban temperatures by radiating heat into the air. Wikimedia Commons/Brocken Inaglory

If planners understand it’s cool to green cities, what’s stopping them?

It seems like a 'no brainer' to use urban greening to help cities adapt to increasing heat, but the uptake of green infrastructure, such as trees and vegetated roofs, surfaces and walls, is slow. Why?
The report criticises the state’s failure to adequately integrate the planning of land use development and transport priorities, but falls into the same trap itself. AAP/Melanie Foster

Australian Infrastructure Plan has some way to go to give our cities what they need

Infrastructure Australia's latest report is substantial but, critically, it fails to incorporate the transport thinking needed to develop more compact cities that work better for everyone.
The urban landscape is complex and ever-changing in cities such as Perth, but digital aerial photography can now monitor even the smallest changes. Wikimedia Commons

The planner’s new best friend: we can now track land-use changes on a scale of centimetres

Constant, complex changes in cities and mine sites are hard to monitor. Drawing on digital aerial photography, it's now possible to track land-use and vegetation changes in areas as small as 10-20cm.
Traffic jams in major African cities such as Lagos, pictured here, as well as Uganda’s Kampala, are a major drain on productivity. Reuters/Akintunde Akinleye

Why Kampala holds single biggest growth opportunity for Uganda

Kampala generates about 60% of Uganda's GDP. In the coming decade urbanisation is the single largest opportunity to spur economic growth in the coming decade.

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