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  • Why haven't China's cities learned from America's mistakes? — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    centre it was clear that Chinese developers had done more than duplicate California s Mediterranean themed architecture McMansion communities like Rancho Santa Fe have also helped recreate the golden state s car headaches and endless sprawl thanks to planners and policymakers who have repeated the urban design sins of developed countries For China California dreaming has turned into a nightmare In the wake of economic reforms in the 1990s that helped set off the largest urban migration in history China had the rare opportunity to embrace cutting edge city building approaches as it expanded its skyline It could have avoided the mistakes that made Los Angeles into the land of gridlock or bypassed the errors that turned the banlieues of Paris into what one American planner calls festering urban sores But China looked back instead of forward Over the past decade and a half the nation s developers and government officials have replicated discredited urban planning templates importing ideas that were tested failed and long since abandoned in places like Europe and the US Planning authorities have committed essentially all the mistakes that have been made in the western world before says Yan Song director of the Program on Chinese Cities at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill She recalls how 10 years ago a delegation of planners from the US convened with Chinese officials who were then working on eliminating Beijing s cycle lanes to make room for more cars The American planners were saying Don t do that please We ve done that we have made that mistake Don t follow us says Song But at the time when you have that kind of modernization people love cars so unfortunately the planners there didn t listen Continue reading the article at theguardian com Dr Song s

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/chinadevelopment (2015-06-03)
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  • A Planning Life: Bridging Academics and Practice — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    Half a century of life as a planner How do you make sense of so many years of practice and education Is there any framework capable of capturing the high and low points of that experience Let me give it a try Although our solutions have evolved the underlying planning problems today seem much the same as they were when I started 55 years ago From new towns and urban renewal to new urbanism we re still trying to improve imperfect places From citizen participation and dispute resolution to digital town meetings and interactive websites we re still trying to improve imperfect democratic decision making From planners as information providers and change agents to sustainability advocates we re still trying to improve imperfect planning roles That s all right These are complex problems with no perfect solutions that will always challenge planners Looking back I see that I spent much of my professional life searching for good urban forms and model planning processes My ideas were influenced by changing perceptions of progressive planning roles My work was shaped by encounters with a number of memorable individuals both in practice and in the academy My home base was the University of North Carolina Department of City and Regional Planning built by the redoubtable Jack Parker Kaiser Rosenberg 2013 As an old fashioned planning educator who began as a practitioner and then joined the academy I am a member of an endangered species a faculty member who learned first to plan and then to conduct funded research The basic skill building and physical design courses that I taught land use planning site planning and dispute resolution often are relegated to adjunct faculty in the planning programs of research universities However having a foot in both practitioner and academic camps has allowed me

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/bridging-acad-pract (2015-06-03)
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  • Land value impacts of wetland restoration — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    wetland acreage and function throughout the nation National Wetlands Policy Forum 1988 A substantial part of this goal is achieved through Section 404 regulations of the U S Clean Water Act 13 USC 1344 which protects aquatic resources by requiring permits for destruction impacts to resources These permits typically require impact avoidance minimization and compensation offsets for unavoidable impacts through ecosystem restoration NRC 2001 As these restoration efforts proliferate it is important to know what impact if any large scale wetland and stream restoration have on surrounding land values Restoration effects on real estate values have substantial implications for protecting resources increasing tax base and improving environmental policies Unfortunately although wetland valuation is a topic of intense debate in the urban and environmental economics literature few studies have focused on the effects of wetland restoration or any type of ecological restoration on surrounding real estate values This analysis focused on the three county region encompassing the cities of Raleigh Durham and Chapel Hill North Carolina The region is ideal for studying this topic as aquatic mitigation and urban growth are both abundant and data are readily available Read the full report This executive summary is drawn from research by Nikhil

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/wetlandrestoration (2015-06-03)
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  • Ripple effect - Asheville's shortage of affordable housing — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    as a measuring stick If a large percentage of residents are exceeding that threshold just to keep a roof over their head the area isn t considered affordable And high housing costs notes Nguyen don t just affect individual households They can endanger the whole local economy People are spending less money on other things because they have less disposable income she explains As we know we live in an economy that thrives on people having extra money to spend on goods and services It has a ripple effect The problem fuels other issues too says Nguyen When you have people working in the central city but living farther and farther out you have increasing congestion pollution sprawl That has its own set of costs to the environment and the livability of a place The number of cost burdened Ashevilleans has increased substantially since 2007 when only 25 percent of homeowners and 41 percent of tenants here fell into that category Nonetheless the percentage of cost burdened renters here is still much lower than in Chapel Hill and Wilmington where that figure tops 57 percent I was actually quite shocked at the numbers says Nguyen noting that Asheville is actually a little lower than the state average of 47 9 percent Roughly 50 percent of all these urban centers being cost burdened is not a good thing for a state Homeowners however are a different story Only Wilmington has a higher percentage of cost burdened homeowners than Asheville Nguyen also stresses that the real impact of those numbers falls heavily on lower income service workers If you re making 200 000 and you re paying a third of that on your home you probably still have some money to put into the local economy she explains Not so much if you re making 12 000 That she continues leaves Asheville s population more hard pressed than residents of cities whose economies rely less on tourism I think the city is well aware that what they have now predominantly a labor force that works in the tourism industry or the service industry is probably not sustainable How do the city s efforts to address the problem stack up When they asked me to do this I thought they were going to come out horribly compared to other places she reveals Instead however Nguyen s research shows the city doing relatively well After consulting with city staff and drawing on her own knowledge she decided to compare Asheville to Greenville S C Chapel Hill Durham and Wilmington Over the last five years Asheville s local government programs and partnerships created an average of 77 affordable housing units per year within the city limits Greenville s average was 34 Wilmington s was 47 City government says Nguyen has done quite a good job They ve invested in it financially they ve supported it through collaborating with other nongovernmental entities I think it s clear from the studies that have been done that they

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/affordable-asheville (2015-06-03)
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  • Global Heels: Hou Xin, visiting scholar in the Program on Chinese Cities — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    as she does What do you like about UNC I like the beautiful campus the peaceful surrounding and the climate My family and I are really enjoying our stay here What do you like about living in Chapel Hill and how is it different from your hometown If you ve brought a family with you what does your family enjoy about the area My wife is also a visiting scholar and our young son is accompanying us I think the most obvious difference between Chapel Hill and my hometown is the quiet atmosphere As the most populous country there are always a lot of people around in China which is quite different from here To tell you the truth at the beginning I could not get used to the quiet I still remember how strange it was when I was walking on the street in the afternoon and there was nobody in sight But now I enjoy the quiet and my whole family is so happy and enjoys the life here What have been the most significant challenges in adjusting to life in Chapel Hill and at UNC At the beginning of the first several weeks when I came to UNC challenges were everywhere but the most significant challenge was how to adapt to the traffic rules As there are lots of tiny differences in the traffic rules between China and the U S it was a little hard for me to forget my habits from China What are you currently reading Besides the books about my studies I have been reading about the history of the U S and China in my spare time I also read photography books and look at picture albums because I hope to improve my techniques for photography What is your city region or country known for I came from Tianjin which is one of the four biggest cities in China Tianjin is famous for its mixture of urban traditional Chinese and Western cultures Some foreign friends who have never traveled to China do not think most of the big cities in China have been greatly affected by Western culture Tianjin is a typical one To some degree Tianjin is like Shanghai which many people have heard or seen because of its multilayered culture Which languages do you speak Chinese English What is the research agenda for your visit to Carolina I would like to audit some university courses attend some academic seminars and lectures travel around the U S A and visit the famous landmarks and buildings Why did you choose to pursue this study or research at UNC I think this question can be answered in two parts First why study in the U S Secondly why at UNC My research interests focus on culture coexistence and culture conflict in urban space which can be studied as culture ecology I think in the background of the so called information era which means that international communication have been greatly improved current urban cultures

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/houxin (2015-06-03)
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  • Development Sustainable Metrics — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    and the public good A step by step description of the development process explains how and when planners can most effectively regulate new projects while a glossary of real estate terms gives all the project participants a common language Detailed scenarios apply the book s principles to a trio of projects rental apartments greenfield housing and mixed use infill Readers can follow the projects from inception to finished product and see how different choices would result in different outcomes This nuts and bolts guide urges planners developers and designers to break out of their silos and join forces to build more sustainable communities It s essential reading for practicing planners real estate and design professionals planning and zoning commissioners elected officials planning students and everyone who cares about the future of cities Click here to read an excerpt from Sustainable Development Projects Click to learn more and order a book About the Authors David R Godschalk FAICP is Stephen Baxter Professor Emeritus in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill He has been a professional planner and a planning educator and has published 12 planning related books Godschalk chaired the 2013 APA Working Group on Comprehensive Plan Certification co chaired the 2011 APA Sustaining Places Task Force and served on the Chapel Hill Town Council and the North Carolina Smart Growth Commission He holds degrees from Dartmouth College the University of Florida and the University of North Carolina He is a registered architect inactive in Florida His recent publications include The Dynamic Decade Creating the Sustainable Campus for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 2001 2011 University of North Carolina Press 2012 and Sustaining Places The Role of the Comprehensive Plan APA Planners Press 2012 His coauthored text Urban

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/sustainbookexcerpt (2015-06-03)
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  • Fredy Grefa: From the Ecuadorian Amazon to Chapel Hill — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    order to have opportunities in life that he needed to get an education Grefa said he didn t even know how to turn on a computer until he attended the Universidad San Francisco de Quito USFQ a private university in Ecuador on scholarship USFQ is an international partner with UNC in the Galapagos Initiative a broad interdisciplinary program of education outreach and research about the Galapagos Islands The chancellor of USFQ Santiago Gangotena is a UNC alumnus Grefa received an undergraduate degree from USFQ in geology But he decided he wanted to expand his knowledge further by pursuing graduate studies in the United States He didn t speak a lot of English But Grefa has always believed that opportunities are out there you just have to find them He wrote 100 emails to different universities in the United States and Yale University responded and offered him a full scholarship for an intensive summer English program That opened more doors and Grefa applied and was admitted to the University of Illinois at Urbana Champagne where he focused his master s studies on Latin America and on environmental management My research thesis focused on an approach about how indigenous knowledge can also be used as a tool to support natural resource management in the Ecuadorian Amazon he said Indigenous people know how to manage resources without destroying the ecosystem But that kind of knowledge is disappearing The completion of his graduate studies took him back home to Ecuador where he worked for indigenous grassroots organizations an oil company and the Ecuadorian government He served as the undersecretary of planning where he was in charge of development in three big provinces His team managed everything from building roads and high schools to airports and hydroelectric sites That piqued his interest in wanting to

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/grefa (2015-06-03)
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  • The School That Jack Built — UNC Department of City & Regional Planning
    be based in the social sciences Boldly initiated in 1945 on a university campus with no architecture or engineering program DCRP was entrusted to a young administrator who had not yet completed his graduate degree in planning at MIT Despite its atypical start DCRP would establish a solid foothold by the early 1950s and grow in size and reputation over the next six decades We hope that the story of this planning education enterprise will be of value to those who studied and taught within its walls perhaps providing an impetus to reflect on past efforts friends and experiences while appreciating a good story We also hope that story will be of interest to friends of DCRP and perhaps to planning education historians looking for insights into the evolution of planning education Observations and anecdotes by alumni and faculty are sprinkled in the margins along with 100 photos of people occasions and places Sidebars describe some of the main characters in the establishment and evolution of the Department There are indexes of people places and illustrations as well as a detailed table of contents to facilitate browsing Published by The Department of City and Regional Planning The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill This book is published in both hard copy and digital versions Hard copy editions cost 20 00 3 00 domestic shipping contact the department for a copy dcrpweb unc edu Digital version note due to file size this is a low resolution version Authors Edward J Kaiser and Karla Rosenberg Edward J Kaiser is Professor of Planning Emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill He began as a doctoral student in the Department of City and Regional Planning in 1961 mentored initially by founding faculty members F Stuart Chapin Jr and James M

    Original URL path: http://planning.unc.edu/jack (2015-06-03)
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