Lead Expert Presentation - Mr. Arun Jain

Report
UN-Habitat Thematic Issue Paper
Integrated urban design & planning for inclusive public
space and city-regional connectivity & efficiency
Sustainable Goals Open Working Group
December 8, 2013 New York City, New York
Arun Jain, Urban Designer, Urban Strategist
Relevancies
Alienation & quantification
Mumford decried the new economy's creation of alienated individuals.
" Freed from his sense of dependence on corporation and neighborhood, the 'emancipated
individual' is dissociated and delocalized: an atom of power, ruthlessly seeking whatever power
can command.
With the quest for financial and political power, the notion of limits have disappeared - limits on
numbers, limits on wealth, limits on population growth, limits on urban expansion: on the
contrary, quantitative expansion have become predominant.
The merchant cannot be too rich; the state cannot possess too much territory; the city cannot
become too big. Success in life was identified with expansion. This superstition still retains its
hold in the notion of an indefinitely expanding economy."
The Story of Utopias (1922)
Lewis Mumford
Intentionality
“It pleases us to dream of shaping history according to a plan. Because it is given to us to
imagine a world that is more beautiful than the one we actually inhabit, we also believe it may
be possible to attain what our mind has wrought.
But in the construction of the world, intentionality is confounded, things always go wrong. Thus
it happens that, paradoxically, in the measure that we try to control for uncertainty, pyramiding
control upon control, we also destroy both the will and the ability to engage in social
construction. The problem of becoming human is reduced to naught.”
The Good Society (1979)
John Friedmann
Organized complexity
The history of modern thought about cities is unfortunately very different from the
history of modern thought about the life sciences. The theorists of conventional
modern city planning have consistently mistaken cities as problems of simplicity and
of disorganized complexity, and have tried to analyze and treat them thus.
“Why have cities not, long since, been identified, understood and treated as
problems of organized complexity?”
The Death and Life of Great American Cities:
The Kind of Problem a City Is (1961)
Jane Jacobs
The right time…
“Desire and improvement cannot be imposed on one by another. To try and do so is
cruel as well as futile. Development cannot take place until its time has come, when it
is wanted. Therefore, it should always be left as a matter of free choice…”
“Trying is an idea whose time has also come.”
Redesigning the Future (1974)
Russell Ackoff
Shifting paradigm
We can’t assume growth will happen
Continued global financial contraction
Declining resources
If we plan it, will it happen?
If we build it, will they come?
Can we implement everything we want?
Where could we be going?*
Option 1 - Growth
One step ahead of disaster
Option 2 - Constraint
Sustainable paths in a low-capital
world
Option 3 - Collapse
Local disasters, regional conflicts
Option 4 - Transformation
Super-structured systems
* 2010 Map of the decade, Institute of the Future
Challenges & dilemmas
Some cities will remain in crisis
Yes, we should fix & eradicate
problems
but
How do we manage problems in the
interim?
Manshiet Nassar Settlement
– Cairo
Cities tend to ignore their assets
Few cities are designed to handle disaster
Floating Streets
New Orleans Urban Water Plan
Heavy settlement & development
pressures + a false sense of security
and
Somali Flood
Refugees
only delay suffering
Hurricane Sandy
Ramallah, West Bank
Economic gain as basis for social?
Assumptions that economic
growth is an essential driver for
improved quality of life are
misleading
Social metrics and goals should
lead & become the basis for
economic development (at least
in planning)
Social infrastructure as backfill
Social issues and needs are (back) filled
(or responded to in desperation)
after ad hoc development that is
focused on jobs and housing occurs
Makeshift school under a metro bridge in Delhi
Targets
Consolidation & reinforcement strategies
Target 1
Develop strategies that consolidate and
reinforce existing urban assets
Preserve (consolidate) your urban essentials
Enhance whatever will reinforce your urban
condition
Create what you will need
Spatial implications
Target 1
Develop strategies that consolidate and
reinforce existing urban assets
Failures encourage sprawl & consumption
of non-urban land
Less, but mutually reinforcing development
establishes basis for long-term compactness
“Urban mining” reduces our ecological
footprint
Potential indicators
Target 1
Develop strategies that consolidate and
reinforce existing urban assets
Rate of increase of urbanized land
Amount of entitled zoned capacity
Dispersal indicators
Leakage rates (loss of inventory, capacity)
Inventories
Planning strategies to manage crises
Target 2
Develop pre-emptive and resilient urban
design approaches to compensate for
known and unknown man-made and
environmental crises
Many cities will struggle just to keep up
Plan so the unaffected parts of cities
continue functioning and can help restore
Need resilient approaches to distribute and
provide basic services
Spatial implications
Target 2
Develop pre-emptive and resilient urban
design approaches to compensate for
known and unknown man-made and
environmental crises
Spatial infrastructure allocations to keep
functioning and assist other urban areas
Give heightened importance to social
infrastructure
Pre-emptive spatial designs can channel
new urban growth
Potential indicators
Target 2
Develop pre-emptive and resilient urban
design approaches to compensate for
known and unknown man-made and
environmental crises
Redundancy and backup allocations
Compatibility matrixes
Urban compactness metrics
Urban eco-shed mapping
Social & cultural infrastructure
Target 3
Integrate social and cultural infrastructure
early in the planning and design of
physical urban infrastructure
Social institutions take time to mature
Their physical and urban manifestations are
sensitive
They are hard won, and hard to re-create
Spatial implications
Target 3
Integrate social and cultural infrastructure
early in the planning and design of
physical urban infrastructure
Space allocations for key social
infrastructure must lead community designs
Attractive and resilient social infrastructure
directs new growth and reinforces existing
Better long-term urban resiliency
Potential indicators
Target 3
Integrate social and cultural infrastructure
early in the planning and design of
physical urban infrastructure
Culturally oriented space and place metrics
New space standards for placement of
social infrastructure
New socially indexed urban inventories
UN-Habitat Thematic Issue Paper
Integrated urban design & planning for inclusive public
space and city-regional connectivity & efficiency
Sustainable Goals Open Working Group
December 8, 2013 New York City, New York
It’s all we have…
Arun Jain, Urban Designer, Urban Strategist
[email protected]
Consider
Things to focus on
Improve focus & inclusivity
Develop collective understanding of the
space in which the problem & its solutions lie
Better decision support tools
Use better means to promote collective
understanding
Less studies, more intervention
Verify where change is possible (likely
“playing field”)
Confirm areas likely to experience the
most change and work on them
Things to focus on
Consider:
Granularity of knowledge vs.
granularity of action
Frameworks over plans
Better tools
Generic solutions generate generic
outcomes

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