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Urban Design for Planners 3: Connectivity and Design Interventions
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Urban Design for Planners 3: Connectivity and Design Interventions

Urban Design for Planners 3: Connectivity and Design Interventions

86 min

This course is approved for 1.25 AICP CM credits.

In urban design, connectivity is an essential theme. Cities and neighborhoods that increase connectivity between people, places, and the things they need become more vibrant and healthy. Connections vary by scale and involve different types of routes. For example, urban designers may want to improve regional connections, such as highways and other major transportation routes, or neighborhood-level connections, like streets and greenways. Connections at smaller scales, such as by block or individual lot, will involve even smaller types of routes and pathways. 

This course focuses on connectivity on corridors of various types—from major thoroughfares to pedestrian paths. The goal will be to find strategic areas where design interventions to improve connectivity will have the most effect. A crucial first step is to find places that are lacking connectivity and then decide where blocked areas need to be redesigned. Strategies for increasing connectivity are based on the view that the built environment constrains or promotes all forms of interaction. 

In This Course

  1. Emily Talen introduces the third course in the Urban Design for Planners series.
  2. Connections vary by scale and involve a variety of routes. For example, urban designers may talk about regional connections in terms of highways and other major transportation routes or about neighborhood-level connections via streets and greenways. Connections at smaller scales, such as by block or individual lot, will involve a discussion of even smaller types of routes and paths.
  3. QGIS: Regional Routes and Facilities
    This chapter examines places with regional connections to determine whether the physical urban form supports that connectivity. Specifically, you'll learn how to use the drawing tools in QGIS to create a layer showing regional facilities.
  4. QGIS: Identifying Connectivity Problem Areas
    Learn how to construct separate layers for problem areas and visually identify "hotspots" of connectivity problems.
  5. Learn how to create a buffer around neighborhood centers and use Google satellite imagery to visually inspect the connectivity around them.
  6. QGIS: Combining Connectivity Layers
    This chapter shows how to merge the connectivity layers created in previous chapters to identify overlapping areas. Additionally, learn how to open and evaluate priority areas in Google Earth.
  7. SketchUp: 3D Gateway Design
    This chapter suggests the addition of a gateway near a cluster of regionally important spaces or facilities to strengthen the location as an entrance to the area.
  8. SketchUp: More Techniques
    This chapter introduces additional SketchUp techniques, such as changing the dimensions of the model and adding photo textures.
  9. Inkscape: Design Ideas
    After identifying areas with more than one layer of connectivity problems, learn how to produce a graphic of design ideas and proposed interventions.
  10. Inkscape: More Design Ideas
    The final chapter explores more design ideas using the Google Earth map of connection priority areas constructed earlier in the course.

Published 2014