Urban development and physical form; a proposal for decision making
Christy, Howard Beverly
Mixon, John; Britton, Earle V.; Hendren, Philip
Master of Architecture
Realizing that under all decisions concerned with design there is an undefined value base, this thesis has been structured to investigate the problems in identifying that value base and in so doing, proposes an approach for handling similar investigations. The proposal is conceived to question those decision-making processes dealing with urban and regional planning and design, and in particular those processes related to urban development and the resulting physical form. It emphasizes environic factors, forces, and influences and their dynamic effect upon natural and man-made conditions. The intent is to encourage and cultivate a better understanding for control and management of natural resources and other conservational assets, and to develop a sense of strategy in their protection and uses Importance is placed upon the relevance of timing and on physical design, both in terms of long-range investment and in immediacy with respect to conditions of current crisis. The concept of land as a commodity which is exhaustible in terms of destroying its natural and inherent life support quality is a reoccurring theme throughout the investigation. The degree of success or failure experienced by the architect/planner in his effort to achieve a livable environment is evaluated in the application of the decision- making process to the design process. The conflict between design theory and the practice of design is examined in relationship to the architect/planner's background of knowledge and commitment to professional responsibility. A case study which typifies the full range of problems anticipated in an urbanization process is scrutinized as a vehicle for testing the validity of such a concern for an approach as well as the approach itself. The keynotes of the proposal are its attempt to eliminate the existences of crisis decisions and design by default within the city-building process. The particular methodology proposed herein is structured to enable the investigator to have a better understanding of the scope of effort necessary in order to identify the means to an end. That end is the elimination of indecisive planning.