Archive for category Town Planning

Relationship of planning theory and planning practice

Role of Planning Theorists from a Planning Practitioner’s viewpoint

Planning theory has always been criticised by a number of practitioners. They are of the opinion that planning theory does not make sense. It does not link planning practice. Sandercock and Forsysth, 1992 argue that there is a huge gap between planning theory and planning practice. However, there are some other planners who believe that planning theory plays a significant role in planning practice and cannot be ignored. Friedmann, 2003 argued that planning practice cannot exist without planning theory. Planning theory acts as a base for the planning practitioners to present solutions to the practical problems in planning.

The planning system would not work without theories. Theories act as a base for the planning practioners.

planning theory

A lot of confusion revolves around the relationship between planning theory and planning practice. I decided to interview one of the planning practitioner. I had an opportunity to interview one of the councillors named Paula Goncalves at Brighton & Hove City Council. Her point of view was in favour of planning theorists.

Here is what she explained:

Theorists try to make sense of what happens in planning (how policies are devised, how decisions are made, how particular interests influence policy making and implementation, the role planners, politicians, developers, communities and others involved in the planning process interact and so) .

There are various ways in which theorists do this.

Some seek to identify patterns and to describe/explain in a structured manner how planning works to produce in order to improve how things are done.

Others use seek theory to communicate a more radical vision of places should be like, their utopia, let’s say.

What is clear is that planning theory changes over time and even at any particular time it is likely that there will be a number of different, at times, competing visions of what planning should do.

Continue Reading

, , , , , , ,

No Comments

Coastal Town Problems

The article discusses some of the problems faced by coastal towns. The elements of tourism and resort activities have to be considered for the upheaval of local economies. This has been the development pattern since the 18th century forming a part of industrial revolution. Understanding the past is necessary to place the current situation in place. English seaside resorts have always heavily depended on the domestic markets. The coastal towns have tried to preserve their distinctiveness and authenticity with regards to Architectural and cultural heritage.

Brighton | Coastal Town

Brighton | Coastal Town

Lack of innovation and loss of media credibility took place in the last generations. What kinds of coastal or seaside town are at issue, how the resort element in their economies fits into past trajectories, present circumstances and failure options, to what extent the problems we identify in the early 21st century are new; what options are available; and what kinds of intervention might be helpful across a broad spectrum?

General issues in coastal towns

  • Poor communication between different sectors
  • Lack of knowledge regarding different organizational cultures
  • Technical standards need to be discussed
  • A shared realization among stakeholders to ensure impending problems do not occur

Continue Reading

, , , , , , , ,

No Comments

Planning System in the UK

Planning System and its complexities

The UK planning system is constantly evolving. It lays a huge emphasis on flexibility which enables the planning system to meet diverse requirements and keep up with the pace of changing nature of problems. Regulating the development and use of land in the public interest has been a major objective of the British planning system. This is where land use planning comes into play. It is a process through which the land uses are determined. Politics, conflict and dispute are at the centre of land use planning. Planning is an important tool that can be used to solve these conflicts.

Cullingworth and Nadin, 2006 define planning as the process by which government resolves disputes about land uses. The increased importance of public participation in the planning processes is to effectively reduce the scope for future conflict.

My argument is that if it is possible to have a planning system which would predict future changes that may have an impact on the system.

Policy making is significant. The clearer it is, the lesser scope it gives for arguing and easier is its application and implementation. Policies keep evolving. Sometimes there are cases where there is no relevant policy to analyse the case against it. This is where policy makers come into picture.
The major difference of the plans in the UK and many other countries is that plans in the UK are not part of the law but made under the law whereas in other countries plans to be issued or enacted as law gives them considerable importance. This feature makes the UK system more complicated than the others. Hence, more room for disputes and the number of courts in the UK have risen.

Continue Reading

No Comments

Amsterdam Case study | The Just City

I was reading through the concept presented by Susan Fainstein “The Just City”. I found it quite interesting. Previously, I summarized her idea of Just city concept, where I mentioned that she conducted three casestudies namely New York, London and Amsterdam. She studied these cities and evaluated them in terms of three core principles namely Equality, Democracy and Diversity. She found Amsterdam as being the closest to the model of the Just City.

She recently visited Amsterdam in 2010 and the changing conditions in the city really got her worried. She poses a question in one of her recent lectures.

Can Amsterdam continue to be a just city? Can it withstand financial crisis, anti-immigrant sentiments, neo-liberal attack?

Explanation why she is concerned about Amsterdam continuing to being a Just City

In Amsterdam, one of the things that have occurred is the reduction in the flow of resources coming in from the national government. One of the arguments she makes in the book “The Just City” is that there were only two major factors that allowed Amsterdam to be so successful in attaining its goals of justice.

Amsterdam casestudy

Amsterdam casestudy

  1. Public land ownership
  2. 90% of the budget in the city would come from the National government so that it could decide what it was going to with it. Also, it didn’t have tax its own citizens in order to have sufficient capital. She compares American cities to Amsterdam. American cities get relatively small part of their finance from the National government. The recent bankruptcy of Detroit was a major shock. It is hard to imagine in any western European city that National government would let a major city simply go bankrupt.

Continue Reading

, , , , ,

1 Comment