PlanPhilly

Planning

    • Citizens Planning Institute

Citizens Planning Institute is accepting applications for the Fall 2014 course series NOW until September 25.

Now in its fourth year, the Philadelphia CPI is the education and outreach arm of the City Planning Commission. Its mission is to empower citizens to take a more active role…

    • Figure 1: Word cloud of terms used in PlanPhilly titles

How 7,000 PlanPhilly stories can tell us where we've been, where we're going

From the introduction of William Penn’s street grid; to Ed Bacon’s Renewal-era neighborhood planning; to the challenge today of balancing growth and equity – Philadelphia’s history reflects societies’ unfinished…

    • Long-time city planner Richard Redding on his Chestnut Hill porch

Reflections on 40 years of Philadelphia City planning

Newly retired Richard Redding reflects on Northeast Philadelphia, zoning by variance and ordinance, community redevelopment and gentriciation PlanPhilly sat down with recently retired Philadelphia City Planning Commission Planning Division Director Richard…

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ABOUT PLANNING

Urban planning is relatively new as an official profession, but most settlements and cities were created with varying degrees of consideration for layout and functionality.  All cities have been shaped and reshaped, from their street fabric to the details of the sewer lines all elements of the city are brought together into a cohesive whole.

It is not something we’re always conscious of, but our lives are shaped by urban planning – how far we live from our work, what transportation we use to get around, the size of our neighborhood park (if we have one), etc. Literacy in many different disciplines is required in order to shape the built environment, but planning mainly focuses on the integration of land use and transportation needs.

What constitutes good city planning has evolved over the years. For example, the urban renewal movement of the mid 20th century used eminent domain to tear down thousands of blocks of structures because they were considered slums. Many people were displaced without relocation plans from their neighborhoods, many of which would have likely been reborn today considering the trends of many current downtown renewal projects. Further, land that was once agricultural suddenly became ripe for residential development once a large-capacity road was built nearby, which has slowly deflated America’s farming industries.

There are many elements that factor into city planning processes.  They include:

  • Design/aesthetics
  • Safety/crime
  • Environmental sustainability and energy consumption
  • Transportation
  • Community involvement and input in the planning process

UPCOMING EVENTS IN PLANNING

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