How people can shape their cities, towns and villages in any part of the world
All over the world there is increasing demand from all sides for more local involvement in the planning and management of the environment.
It is widely recognised that this is the only way that people will get the surroundings they want.
And it is now seen as the best way of ensuring that communities become safer, stronger, wealthier and more sustainable.
But how should it be done? How can local people – wherever they live – best involve themselves in the complexities of architecture, planning and urban design? How can professionals best build on local knowledge and resources?
Over the past few decades, a wide range of methods has been pioneered in different countries. They include new ways of people interacting, new types of event, new types of organisation, new services and new support frameworks.
This handbook provides an overview of these new methods of community planning for the first time in one volume. It is written for everyone concerned with the built environment. Jargon is avoided and material is presented in a universally
applicable, how-to-do-it style. Whether you are a resident wanting to improve the place where you live, a policy maker interested in improving general practice, or a development professional working on a specific project, you should quickly be able to find what you need.
The methods described here can each be effective in their own right. But it is when they are combined together creatively that community planning becomes a truly powerful force for positive and sustainable change. Just a few of the many possibilities are featured in the scenarios section towards the end of the book.
In years to come it is possible to imagine that every human settlement will have its own architecture centre and neighbourhood planning offices; that all development professionals will be equipped to organise ideas competitions and
planning weekends; that everyone will have access to planning aid and feasibility funds; that all architecture schools will have urban design studios helping surrounding communities; and that everyone will be familiar with design
workshops, mapping, participatory editing, interactive displays and other methods described in this book.
When that happens, there will be more chance of being able to create and maintain built environments that satisfy both individual and community needs, and that are enjoyable to live and work in.
In the meantime the art of community planning is evolving rapidly. Methods continue to be refined and new ones invented. There is a growing network of experienced practitioners. This handbook will hopefully help with the evolution
of community planning by allowing people to benefit from the experience gained so far and by facilitating international exchange of good practice