Dynamic Urban Design
Dynamic Urban Design
A Handbook for Creating Sustainable Communities Worldwide
Perfect Bound Softcover
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Advance Praise for Dynamic Urban Design

“Finally, in one book a complete guide to the theory, practice, and potential of urban design by one of Canada’s preeminent urban designers.”

—David R. Witty, former dean, School of Architecture, University of Manitoba, Canada

“Michael von Hausen has given us a clear and hopeful path to the creation of a sustainable urbanism, one that will be inspiring and instructive to practitioners, students, and all those who are focused on the most fundamental issue of our time.”

—Jim Adams, architect and principal, McCann Adams Studio, Austin, Texas

“Dynamic Urban Design establishes Michael von Hausen as a sustainable urban design authority. Sharing insights taken from six millennia … von Hausen articulates a clearly understandable and masterfully illustrated process.”

—Kevin Harris, architect and principal, Kevin Harris Architect, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Whether we are practicing urban designers or interested citizens, virtually all of us want to live in communities that are safe, attractive, and healthy. Yet our good intentions face conflicting goals. How are we going to improve community health, reduce crime, and improve mobility in cities while at the same time expanding our cities to accommodate growth? How are we going to do all this with seemingly limited financial resources? How do we do more with less, live within our means, and still create a higher quality of life? The list of challenges is almost endless. Urban design is emerging as a critical interface that brings various professions together to address these challenges and improve our communities.

For future human survival and quality of life, the world needs a more inclusive, rigorous, socially inspired, and comprehensive urban design model integrated with sustainable development. This book delivers that model—a reference guide for doing it right.

We are becoming more urban by the minute. Globally, 80% of our population live in cities. We need the tools to design our cities so they are efficient, vibrant, safe, and healthy. This book illustrates in rich case studies, process examples, the "how to" of urban design in not only the downtown but suburban and rural contexts. The "tool kit" of design and process tools are provided to help design communities from theory to practice not only for the design professional but for the community advocate.

At the heart of an effective urban design approach illustrated in this handbook is the fundamental concepts of place, process, and plans. Quite simply, this approach recognizes people and their interaction, the place where they live or work, and plans that are formed through these recognitions are keystones to future urban design. A comprehensive and inclusive process helps define the different plans- from transportation plans to design guidelines that collectively determine a healthy and responsive urban fabric. The products are flexible yet appropriate to the time and resources – dynamic in their very nature and responsiveness. This approach also demands a multi-disciplinary and multi-faceted urban design strategy that includes architects, landscape architects, planners, engineers, developers, and economists among others in both the public and private sectors. One of the important goals is to blend and balance multiple public and private objectives in a series of plans to achieve outstanding and enduring results. These urban design plans do not gather dust on a shelf. They become blueprints for the future!

Michael A. von Hausen has more than thirty years of experience teaching, training, facilitating, and practicing around the world in sustainable land development planning and urban design. He is president of MVH Urban Planning & Design Inc. and adjunct professor in the graduate Urban Studies Program at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Visit him online at www.mvhinc.com.


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