UD2: What Stops Urbanism, and Why the Design Profession Needs a New Approach

The upcoming 2018 International Urban Design Conference will be held at the SMC Conference and Function Centre, Sydney, NSW next month over 12 – 13 November.

The conference will showcase innovations in projects and research embracing and creating transformational change in urban environments.

Joining us at the conference is Ms. Tanya Vincent, Principal Manager Urban Design with Transport for NSW who will present on ‘UD2: What Stops Urbanism, and Why the Design Profession Needs a New Approach’.

Abstract

Every design report, masterplan and planning strategy promises a contextual, humanist urbanism with design excellence, yet something always seems to happen between the paper and the product. If the theory, principles and masterplans are in place, what is really stopping urbanism?

This article is about the production of streets, places, infrastructure and subdivision. It explores how the atelier model of architecture is unsuited to the industrialised, compliance processes behind the design and delivery of urban design and too often fails to deliver the principles promised.

The article charts the project arc from the vision to the outcome against the waning influence of principles and the dominating power of rules. Examples demonstrate how the focus on principles is no match to the accretion of rules over decades and the rigorous enforcement by multiple agencies.

The design profession’s strategies to address this imbalance are evaluated: educating the industry with design guidelines, codifying principles (e.g. sustainability, crime prevention) and design review panels. The first two strategies are found to be weak; in particular the idea that enlightened individuals will overcome the systemic barriers. Guidelines without a genuine policy change are found to rely on the weakest of policy mechanisms – inspiration and hope. The danger of codified principles (e.g. Movement and Place) intended to guide the design process evolving into prescriptive compliance tasks and reducing the creative space in which designers can be trusted to find the contextual, holistic solution is highlighted.

Alternative approaches are offered. Examples include a mechanism within the existing compliance system that values the contextual, holistic solution over the compliance of the parts, similar to the SFAIRP method in risk management; a focus on our own education of the industrialised procedures; and tackling the sub-urban regulations deep within the technical standards that stop urbanism.

Biography

Tanya Vincent is Transport for NSW Principal Manager Urban Design currently working on the Sydney Light Rail project. She explains the project as “12km of route equals 24km of urban design” and enjoys working with many talented professionals to balance the tensions between link and place through the city. She speaks frequently on urban issues, most recently the University of Sydney Alumni event on Urbanism and the Driverless Car at the Art Gallery of NSW.

Tanya’s experience in policy, projects and education bridges the disciplines of architecture, planning and urban design. Prior to joining Transport for NSW, Tanya was an Associate at JBA and previously the Urban Design Advisory Service. Recent urban design projects have included co-authorship of the Growth Centres Housing Diversity SEPP and DCP package, Landcom’s 21st Century Compact Housing initiative leading to NSW’s first display village of torrens title, attached housing at North Penrith, numerous master plans and industry publications such as Landcom’s Residential Density Guide, Better Residential Subdivision, and the UDAS Street Design Guidelines.

As a leading practitioner in neighbourhood design, Tanya was awarded a 2011 Churchill Fellowship. In 2015 she was awarded the Institute of Civil Engineers Outstanding Presentation of the Year.

For more information on the 2018 International Urban Design Conference and to secure your spot visit the conference website at urbandesignaustralia.com.au

 

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UD2: Barcelona to Bankstown One Superblock at a Time

The upcoming 2018 International Urban Design Conference will be held at the SMC Conference and Function Centre, Sydney, NSW next month over 12 – 13 November.

The conference will showcase innovations in projects and research embracing and creating transformational change in urban environments.

Joining us at the conference is Mrs Valerie Giammarco, Manager City Design with Canterbury Bankstown Council who will present on ‘UD2: Barcelona to Bankstown One Superblock at a Time: Applying Global Best Practice of Complete Streets and Balanced Transport to a Car-Dominated Strategic Centre’.

Abstract

Barcelona made headlines with its Superblocks concept, where car traffic is re-directed to the periphery allowing the internal streets to become more pedestrian friendly, social and good for business. Now a similar approach is being pursued in Bankstown, the primary centre in Sydney’s largest Council, with the Bankstown Complete Streets Project.

With proposals for a new high frequency Metro line, university campus, hospital, new commercial and residential towers, and redevelopment of a major shopping mall, Bankstown is on the verge of transformation into a key strategic centre.

However the centre experiences one of the highest rates of car use in Sydney and a number of other transport and public domain issues which, if not addressed in the face of this significant growth, will compromise its ability to flourish as a vibrant, safe, attractive and culturally diverse destination.

The Complete Streets Project is applying the Barcelona model to Bankstown by re-directing the majority of traffic and parking around the CBD edges and re-designing the CBD streets to become safer and more attractive to walk, eat, shop and socialise. This represents a fundamental shift in the policy and cultural context that has existed in Bankstown for the past several decades, but is considered pivotal to the centre’s success in the coming decades.

Valerie Giammarco, Manager City Design at Canterbury-Bankstown Council, will provide a detailed overview of the project process and concept designs and discuss how the team have addressed challenges posed by diverse community opinions, political decisions, legal and technical constraints.

Biography

Valerie Giammarco is the Manager City Design at Canterbury Bankstown Council, the largest Council by population in NSW with over 360,000 residents. Valerie is an Urban Designer and Architect who is actively championing place-making, liveability and loveability in Sydney’s melting pot of middle ring suburbs. She values innovation and collaboration particularly when it comes to making cities and embracing change. During her career she has had a variety of roles within the public and private sectors. She has won many awards including a recent commendation at the National Planning Institute of Australia awards for “Best Planning Ideas – Small Project” for Urban Interventions in Bondi Junction.

For more information on the 2018 International Urban Design Conference and to secure your spot visit the conference website at urbandesignaustralia.com.au

 

UD1: K2K: Integrating Infrastructure Delivery with Urban Planning

The 2018 International Urban Design Conference will be held at the SMC Conference and Function Centre, Sydney, NSW over 12 – 13 November.

The conference will showcase innovations in projects and research embracing and creating transformational change in urban environments.

Joining us at the conference is Mr Richard Nugent, Director Urban Design at CM+ who will present on ‘UD1: K2K: Integrating Infrastructure Delivery with Urban Planning.

Abstract

How can urban renewal be managed by integrating transport infrastructure with planning to create well-designed, sustainable and liveable places?

Kensington and Kingsford town centres in Eastern Sydney are undergoing transition with the introduction of the Sydney CBD to South East Light Rail. The new infrastructure will directly impact on the centres’ identity, functionality and accessibility and has been a catalyst for considerable redevelopment pressure.

Randwick City Council has undertaken an innovative approach, including engaging CM+ to prepare the Planning Strategy for these adjacent precincts to guide change within the town centres.

Council took an innovative approach to the overall project, through implementation of a 15-year program comprising short, medium and long term planning and urban design interventions.

Council initially developed Light Rail Urban Design Guidelines to provide an overarching framework for place making and public domain improvements alongside the delivery of the light rail infrastructure.

To address the town centres’ longer-term planning needs, a strategic vision was established through an International Urban Design Competition which recently won the Greater Sydney Commission’s inaugural award in 2017 for “A Great Plan”. The competition called for fresh ideas to support the sustainable growth and rejuvenation of the town centres through high quality urban design.

The subsequent draft K2K Planning Strategy sets out the implementation actions to guide long term changes to land use, built form and the public domain. The Strategy contains measures to enhance the liveability, sustainability and economic prosperity of both town centres with a focus on design excellence and innovation.

Working via a collaborative process with Council, a best practice approach to integrating infrastructure delivery with urban planning has been established, to create well-designed and liveable places.

Winner: 2017 Planning Institute of Australia (NSW) Award | Best Planning Ideas – Small Project

Biography

Richard Nugent | Director Urban Design CM+ MArch Urban Design (Dist), Harvard University GSD, USA BArch University of Notre Dame USA Registered Architect – Registered Architect | Massachusetts, USA | Reg. No. 6948 NSW | ARB Reg. No. 9202 Member Australian Institute of Architects Member American Institute of Architects Member Planning Institute of Australia Dick is responsible for the design and management of major urban design and master planning projects at CM+.

He has local and international experience at all levels of master planning, design, documentation and construction administration on a wide range of projects, managing multidisciplinary teams throughout the design and delivery process. He is currently a design advisor to the Barangaroo Delivery Authority, is a member of the Randwick Design Excellence Panel and a member of the newly created NSW Government Architect’s State Design Review Panel. He is currently the Design Manager for NorthConnex, a major infrastructure project in northern Sydney.

For more information on the 2018 International Urban Design Conference visit the conference website at urbandesignaustralia.com.au

UD1: Delivering Liveable, Smart and Sustainable Urban Renewal Using Green Star Communities

The 2018 International Urban Design Conference will be held at the SMC Conference and Function Centre, Sydney, NSW over 12 – 13 November.

The conference will showcase innovations in projects and research embracing and creating transformational change in urban environments.

Joining us at the conference is Mr Nick Alsop, Senior Manager – Market Engagement with the Green Building Council of Australia who will present on ‘UD1: Delivering Liveable, Smart and Sustainable Urban Renewal Using Green Star Communities’.

Abstract

Cities across the country are accelerating urban renewal and infill in order to meet increased demands of population growth. This is a huge opportunity to deliver precinct scale sustainable urban design, built form and infrastructure and contributing to the pressing urban agenda of reshaping our cities to be more liveable, smart, connected and environmentally friendly. The Green Star – Communities rating tool is a framework and certification tool that is being employed to achieve and demonstrate this. This presentation will look at how this rating tool works and its application in practice.

It will look at trends in development across urban renewal as well as give an introduction to Green Star Communities, and its delivery and application in practice across different sites. Those who have not heard of the Green Star – Communities rating system will learn how it works. Those who already familiar with it will learn what opportunities might be applicable for future projects, and how it can align with a city’s social, environmental and economic goals.

Nick will draw on work from leading edge Green Star Communities projects such as Green Square, Brisbane Showgrounds, Fishermans Bend, Barangaroo and West Village to demonstrate how sustainability and liveability is being integrated into project visions and goals, spatial planning, engagement, infrastructure, placemaking, design and construction. Nick will also reflect on the future trend for sustainable precincts in Australia in response to the global and local sustainability challenges, climate change and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Biography

Nick has over 15 years experience in delivering city sustainability programs. At the GBCA he is responsible for the growth and strategy for the Green Star Communities tool, working with government and business stakeholders to apply the framework in delivering best practice sustainable precincts. Prior to this, Nick worked in a variety of sustainability roles at state and local government, including cities of Port Phillip and Melbourne, and Sustainability Victoria

For more information on the 2018 International Urban Design Conference visit the conference website at urbandesignaustralia.com.au

UD2: Meaning and Experience: Landscape Narratives for a New City Heart for the Sunshine Coast

The 2018 International Urban Design Conference will be held at the SMC Conference and Function Centre, Sydney, NSW over 12 – 13 November.

The conference will showcase innovations in projects and research embracing and creating transformational change in urban environments.

Joining us at the conference is Mr Mark Fuller, Principal Urban Design and Landscape at Tract Consultants who will present on ‘UD2: Meaning and Experience: Landscape Narratives for a New City Heart for the Sunshine Coast’.

Abstract

The Maroochydore City Centre is being developed on the site of the former Horton Park golf course on the Sunshine Coast.
The re-stitching of the 53 Ha site with the fabric of the existing urban area will physically and conceptually reshape the City, providing a new heart for the “Central Business District for the 21st Century”: a focus for investment and community growth.

With over 40% of the site being developed over the next 20 years as open space, a strong design strategy for the public realm is critical in underpinning this ambition, guiding the creation of a new landscape and family of urban places which can evolve alongside, and be enriched by, the community as it grows.

A key pillar of the strategy has been the discovery and articulation of a unique identity and narrative for the public realm. As a site which has been extensively modified from its natural, low lying wetland character, a different paradigm was needed which could guide the design towards a renewed relationship with the landscape of the region.

The resulting design strategy explores the notion of the regional landscape as an ancient place that has been shaped and moulded by the elements, continually changing and adapting seasonally and over time, where it is possible to experience both drama and intimacy, and where water and the coastal environment permeate the community’s association with the region they love.
The proposed character is therefore derived from an exploration of aspects of the Sunshine Coast landscape which can provide analogies to the forms, materials and spatial character within the site, built on a platform of endemic and tested materials.

The aim is for a distinctive, recognisable and beautiful public realm and landscape that is responsive to its location and reflective of the wider region.

Biography

Mark Fuller FAILA AIA CMLI RIBA Mark has over 35 years professional experience, having worked extensively throughout Australia and internationally in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the US. He is a registered landscape architect in Australia and the UK, and an architect (United Kingdom). Mark’s work has focussed on the creative fusion of built form and the landscape, and the design of unique and memorable places. He has been responsible for the master planning and delivery of the public realm for new and existing urban environments and in the integration of new development in sensitive landscapes and communities. He was on the Sunshine Coast Urban Design Advisory Panel for 10 years, and has served on the Queensland State Board for Urban Places, and is a former National President of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects.

For more information on the 2018 International Urban Design Conference visit the conference website at urbandesignaustralia.com.au