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1. Professional Real Estate Development
$100.00 $92.33 list($125.00)
2. Land Development Calculations:
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3. Multifamily Housing Development
$67.96 $55.38 list($79.95)
4. Place Making
$138.00 $108.00 list($150.00)
5. Time-Saver Standards for Urban
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6. Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl
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7. Contemporary Urban Planning (6th
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8. Urban Sprawl and Public Health:
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9. Conservation Design for Subdivisions:
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10. The Art of Revitalization : Improving
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11. HOME FROM NOWHERE: REMAKING OUR
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12. Comeback Cities: A Blueprint for
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13. The Dimensions of Parking
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14. The New Shape of Suburbia
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15. Balancing Nature and Commerce
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19. Readings in Planning Theory
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20. Crime Prevention Through Environmental

1. Professional Real Estate Development
by Richard B. Peiser
list price: $79.95
our price: $60.76
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0874208947
Catlog: Book (2003-01)
Publisher: Urban Land Institute
Sales Rank: 17961
Average Customer Review: 3.67 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Thoroughly updated, the second edition of Professional Real Estate Development explains the nuts and bolts of the real estate development industry. You will learn how to develop and manage five types of real estate products: land, residential, office, industrial, and retail uses. Focusing on small-scale projects, the authors show you practical methods for developing each major type of real estate, including feasibility analysis, design and construction, financing, marketing, and management. Photos, site plans, diagrams, and case studies provide examples of actual projects and how the process works. Information is specific and detailed, with costs, rents, and financing information included by product type ... Read more

Reviews (3)

2-0 out of 5 stars ULI Guide
For its high price, you may want to seriously think about your needs. If your intention is to buy a book for a broad overview of the development process with a somewhat academic approach, then this may be right for you. If you are builder or someone with prior real estate brokerage/service experience, you may find this too ivory tower and not practical. This book was a bit theoretical for my taste.

Although this book has been reprinted recently, all the data dates back to the late-1990's. Social and economic data are perhaps presented for illustrative purposes only, however, it is a bit disheartening.

There are some interesting project data, financial models and checklists, but frankly, the reader could figure those out on his/her own with some common sense and marginal experience in the industry.

Bottom line -- my suggestion is to review the book at the public library before you buy.

4-0 out of 5 stars principles & history
Interestingly, I ended up reading this book like a fiction -- from cover-to-cover. And, it was a fun read. I particularly enjoyed some of the insightful stories of real estate development history, which is clearly a part of our American heritage.

However, I thought the real-life applications of the book's suggestions were victimized by this type of presentation. Certain "case studies" were presented along side a theoretical "how-to" processes to develop properties; these seemed entertaining and thoughtfully presented, rather than real life cookie cutter. And, in many cases, I knew a famous property and became more informed of its origins and characteristics. But it did not unfortunately go the next step to discuss mistakes made, lessons learned, or successful components to highlighted -- which good case studies should endeavor. Moreover, it did not spend much time on architectural issues or financing arrangements that may have solved problems specific to the properties.

I would suggest to any potential Amazon customer to purchase this book only in conjunction with another more hardcore building book and/or architecture book.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Overview Of The Development Process
I am a 66 year old developer with several successful projects under my belt. This is a fine book for beginning, intermediate, and yes, advanced developers. The best I've ever read, and I've got bookshelves full of them. Also, for a modest fee, you can download from the publisher the software used for the financial illustrations in the book. I had to learn this material the hard way, because when I started out, there weren't any good books on development. If you want to be a developer, start here. If you're an experienced developer, you'll learn a lot from this book. I congratulate the authors for putting in such an immense amount of work. ... Read more


2. Land Development Calculations: Interactive Tools and Techniques for Site Planning, Analysis and Design
by Walter Martin Hosack
list price: $125.00
our price: $100.00
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Asin: 007136255X
Catlog: Book (2001-06-26)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional
Sales Rank: 25456
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"It is the kind of simplified tool that many of us in practice sorely need" - Jamie Greene, AICP, AIA, Principal, American Communities Partnership


*The first computational tool for land development and site planning analysis and design
*Real-world case studies, with photographs and plans, illustrate how alternative development options would affect the project results
*Includes a CD-ROM containing 30 interactive spreadsheets that can be used for every type of land development scenario ... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Extremely valuable tool
"Land Development Calculations" provides an excellent and innovative strategy for working towards sustainable land use and development. The models for varying land development strategies can assist local government land use decision makers and planners as well as developers determine the carrying capacity of land within realistic thresholds. The accompanying spreadsheets for the development scenarios on the CD-ROM are extremely user friendly and do not place an undue burden on the user by requiring what may be hard to find or to collect data. All of the data required just is typical of what is necessary to make appropriate land development decisions. As a local government planner, I am working towards incorporating the information received from the models in to the zoning and development code as part of the approval process by using it to further assess suitability of the property for the purposes proposed (a zoning consideration required in accordance with the State of Georgia Zoning Procedures Act). I strongly encourage other land planners and developers to read "Land Development Calculations," because of its highly practical and very timely material.

5-0 out of 5 stars Author Delivers Valuable Techniques and Tools
This is a terrificaly valuable technical reference for practitioners who need an efficient method of performing land development calulations. The book and its companion set of spreadsheets enable users to answer two key questions: 1) how much can be built on a given piece of land; or 2) how much land is needed to accommodate a given use? The material is clearly written and well illustrated, especially a series of worksheets leading through the method. Another strength is its comprehensiveness and detail, including all major land-use and micro site conditions. ... Read more


3. Multifamily Housing Development Handbook (Uli Development Handbook Series)
by Adrienne Schmitz, Adrienne Schmitz, Urban Land Institute
list price: $94.95
our price: $80.71
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Asin: 0874208696
Catlog: Book (2000-11-15)
Publisher: Urban Land Institute
Sales Rank: 129371
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Book Description

Highly regarded for comprehensiveness and quality, ULI's handbooks have provided real estate professionals with practical advice and authoritative information on the development process for decades.

The Multifamily Housing Development Handbook covers best practices and proven techniques for a wide range of project types and settings. Each aspect of the development process is explained in detail, from market analysis and financing to product design and operations.

Rich with color photos, examples, and case studies, the book describes the real-life experiences and strategies of seasoned developers, planners, and architects.

Highlights

Covers a wide variety of multifamily housing types and locations including garden, townhouse and high-rise project types, affordable and high-end price ranges, new, rehab, historic preservation, and adaptive reuse properties, urban and suburban locations, niche products such as student, military, and seniors housing

Includes practical, how-to information on the multifamily housing development process such as market analysis, site selection, feasibility, financing, planning, design, regulations, marketing, operations, and management.

Provides 14 illustrated case studies of successful projects that cover the site history and challenges, feasibility and financing, planning and design, marketing/leasing, experience gained, project costs, rental prices, and schedule. ... Read more


4. Place Making
by Charles C. Bohl
list price: $79.95
our price: $67.96
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Asin: 0874208866
Catlog: Book (2002-10-21)
Publisher: Urban Land Institute
Sales Rank: 63256
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Book Description

One of the hottest trends in real estate is the development of town centers and urban villages that include a mix of uses in a pedestrian friendly setting. This new book will help you navigate the unique development issues and options and show you how to make all of the elements work together. You will learn about the economic and social forces driving this trend; how these projects are being developed in master planned communities, infill, and redevelopment areas; special regulatory, market and finance issues; and how suburban planners and developers are pursuing town center concepts to create attractive gathering places for their communities. Illustrat-ed in full color, the book includes case studies and examples that describe how leading professionals met the challenges and developed innovative and successful projects. ... Read more


5. Time-Saver Standards for Urban Design
by DonaldWatson
list price: $150.00
our price: $138.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 007068507X
Catlog: Book (2003-02-24)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional
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Book Description


* The foremost professional reference on the physical design of cities and urban places
* International coverage including recent European and Asian sustainability initiatives
* Covers essential topics such as preservation, renewal, patterns of settlement and more
* Outstanding contributors include Alan Plattus, Dean of the College of Architecture, Yale University
... Read more


6. Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream
by Andres Duany, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, Jeff Speck
list price: $18.00
our price: $12.24
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Asin: 0865476063
Catlog: Book (2001-04-01)
Publisher: North Point Press
Sales Rank: 16161
Average Customer Review: 4.35 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

A manifesto by America's most controversial and celebrated town planners, proposing an alternative model for community design.

There is a growing movement in North America to put an end to suburban sprawl and to replace the automobile-based settlement patterns of the past fifty years with a return to more traditional planning principles. This movement stems not only from the realization that sprawl is ecologically and economically unsustainable but also from a growing awareness of sprawl's many victims: children, utterly dependent on parental transportation if they wish to escape the cul-de-sac; the elderly, warehoused in institutions once they lose their driver's licenses; the middle class, stuck in traffic for two or more hours each day.

Founders of the Congress for the New Urbanism, Andres Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk are at the forefront of this movement, and in Suburban Nation they assess sprawl's costs to society, be they ecological, economic, aesthetic, or social. It is a lively, thorough, critical lament, and an entertaining lesson on the distinctions between postwar suburbia-characterized by housing clusters, strip shopping centers, office parks, and parking lots-and the traditional neighborhoods that were built as a matter of course until mid-century. It is an indictment of the entire development community, including governments, for the fact that America no longer builds towns. Most important, though, it is that rare book that also offers solutions.
... Read more

Reviews (63)

4-0 out of 5 stars Did you realize how suburban sprawl affects the USA?
This book allowed me to understand why the US cities look so different from the European ones. Over the years the cult of car and the construction of vast network of highways contributed to SPRAWL:

- cookie cutter houses

- wide, treeless and sidewalk-free roads

- mindlessly curving cul-de-sacs

- streetscape of garage doors

After the war Federal Housing Administration and Veterans Administration offered loans to finance new suburban homes, thus discouraging renovation of existing housing. Simultaneously a 41000 mile interstate highway construction program, couples with regional road expansion projects, and the neglect of mass transit, helped make automotive commuting affordable and convenient for average citizen.

People no longer walk, they get into their cars (most often too big, btw) to drive to the nearest strip malls. Walking is either not possible (no sidewalks, no lights to cross the road) or not pleasant because of architecture of buildings, noise protecting walls etc. Crosswalks are sometimes erased on the grounds of pedestrian safety. Indeed in some areas drivers are not used to see walking people and do not stop at their red-light-turns. Shops followed customers to the suburbs. I was really shocked by the deserted after 5 pm capital city of Jackson, Ms. The same happened in Detroit, Hartford, Des moines, Syracuse, Tampa and on many more places.

Old-time walkable cities (or their parts) like Boston's Beacon Hill, Santa Fe, Nantucket, Annapolis, Nantucket - are fun for tourists and residents but are also violating zoning regulations.

Contemporary housing subdivisions (clusters or pods) consist only of residences, even if are called neighbourhoods. You will not find a convenience shop, or a library, or a school on site. Also, they are carefully separated from the neighbouring clusters. Subdivisions have wide internal roads, which are very wide unlike old-type yield roads with one traffic lanes to accomodate both directions. Such roads/streets are good for drivers but not for pedestrians. These roads are then connected at only one point to the main collector road. Here another truth needs emphasizing - adding lanes to highways only makes traffic worse, does not solve the jams. Los Angeles, NYC or or Atlanta provide good example. Highways only mitigate people against leaving closer to work. Increased traffic capacity causes people to drive more - after discovering this truth Britain cut their road building budgets, but not Americans.

Mass transit is the only solution, and it has to start with pedestrians. Park and ride solutions are not very helpful

No more housing subdivisions!

No more shopping centers!

No more office parks!

No more highways!

Neighbourhoods or nothing!

5-0 out of 5 stars We Are All Responsible - So Let's All Look For Solutions
Andres Duany, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, and Jeff Speck are urban planners who have seen and done much of what America is made up of today. Here is an an overview of the origins and current status of the epidemic of Suburban sprawl, and it's heavily documented and scientifically researched consequences. Some of the concepts discussed include zoning laws, regulations, lost tax revenue, lack of aesthetics, and anonymous "soul-less" suburbs filled with alienated people.

Obviously, people have to live somewhere. They have to buy groceries and shop, send their children to schools, and live in a neighborhood that's desirable. Are separate residential and commercial zoning laws the only way? Are large sub-divisions of residential track-housing, the only option? These plans usually necessitate a car for doing anything and everything, no matter how trivial. In metropolitan areas with high population densities, we need to get in our cars, drive through congested traffic to eyesoric strip-malls, even to buy a loaf of bread. There is no sense of collective community, even in a mental sense. Office parks are separated, yet connected by hiways, into islands of emptiness. There are also negative economic consequences. It has been been proven from varieties of sources, that the current suburban model not only strains but debilitates the economy. There is a heavy-toll placed on the residents of these widespread areas.

How many times have you heard people say "the traffic is terrible," while they are driving their vehicles everyday to do virtually everything? Have you ever heard, "where do all these people come from?" or "I wonder where they're all going?" Answer: they're doing exactly the same thing you're doing: driving through suburbia, everyday, for everything, and anything. As the population continues to increase in the United States we'll see unprecedented massive growth of suburban sprawl under the current plan of the suburban model. It's not revamping the model entirely that may make living under these circumstances more livable, but some minor well-thought adjustments....

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the ten best books on American life
I found this book intriguing, because the authors understand why I like my neighborhood. Even better, they understand why I hate so many new housing projects. This is an important book, as vital as Jane Jacobs' work, and it has some uncomfortable truths to share. The US has become a Suburban Nation; a nation of badly-designed suburbs. The newest, more expensive ones are some of the worst.

My neighborhood has houses that are smallish, but sidewalks are everywhere. There are stores within reasonable walking distance, and not too many cul-de-sacs. Three parks are less than a mile away. That means I can walk more than one route to get places. More importantly, others walk the neighborhood too, so I actually meet my neighbors. A neighborhood built almost 50 years ago, the trees are mature (a rarity in Silicon Valley burbs) and provide shade, coolness, and beauty. 8000 square foot lots are neither so small that the houses are crushed together nor so large that walking seems to get you nowhere because it takes too long to pass each property.

Contrast this with the new developments going in: miniscule yards (and therefore little greenery), matchstick trees that don't receive any sun, overly wide arterials that offer only one way into or out of the development. Walls around the complex not only keep outsiders out, they prevent insiders from going out, too, unless they get in the car and crowd onto the only access road. Once in one's car, there is no opportunity to talk with neighbors on the inside, either.

Before reading Suburban Nation, I still had the same sense of what made a neighborhood compelling and we bought our home accordingly, preferring the old small house over the big new ones despite my need for closet space. Authors Duany, Plater-Zybeck, and Speck articulate these principals clearly and enjoyably. With many photographs illustrating both good and bad examples of city planning, Suburban Nation shows the consequences of bad assumptions as well as bad results. The authors like Winter Park, FL, because its downtown is walkable and residents, most of them retired and many who have given up driving, can easily participate in community life. They hate most of the new burbs being built because there is no there there, there's just a road from here to somewhere else with no central gathering point.

Most of the failure of the modern suburb is due to the automobile. Wider roads make a community less cohesive, because a wide road encourages speeding, while a narrow one encourages drivers to slow down, regardless of the posted speed limit. New communities have ridiculously wide roads, which not only lead to unsafe traffic but also discourages pedestrians. Cul-de-sacs, corners, and curves are overly wide as well, to accomodate uneeded 40 foot fire trucks; completely unneeded in a suburb where no building is over two stories but purchased by town councils wanting their fire chiefs to be happy. The net result is a 120 foot walk to cross a street instead of 40 feet because the corners are shaved to allow the stupid fire truck access, the fire truck the suburb DOES NOT NEED because a smaller truck would do just as good a job.

People claim to want to live in the suburbs for a smaller community, but the way they are built frustrates any chance of finding it. Planners consider schools to be traffic nuisances and build them away from central locations, yet larger schools are what leads to disconnection. Putting them on the boundaries instead of the center of town destroys a chance of meeting other children from the neighborhood, and further increases car usage. The authors ask why a school is considered a traffic nuisance rather than making them smaller to be community assets?

Duany and Plater-Zybeck have designed some marvelous new communities, and hope this well-written and ground-breaking book will publicize why they succeed. The first step is repealing the planning rules that prevent all these elements of vital community. Read Suburban Nation and find out how community building begins with good design.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Absolutely Fantastic Book
I am not an architect or city planner, but I believe this book would be an interesting and informative read for anyone. It provides a lot of information and references for a professional and it is a great starting point for an amateur or concerned and active citizen. Additionally (and very difficult to accomplish all three), it is a very pleasant read for anyone else who wants to learn more about designing a neighborhood, how cities form, how to combat environmental destruction or simply why they do or don't enjoy a specific neighborhood.

Part of the success of this book for me was the format. There are small pages with wide margins. The margins allow for small black & white pictures directly next to the text they illustrate. The pictures by themselves are not very good, but they illustrate the text very well. Additionally, the authors used two systems of footnotes/endnotes (a system that I have not seen before) that expand and clarify the story very well, without bogging it down. For asides or amplifications, they have footnotes that you can quickly read, after you have finished your current line of thought. These sources are not always completely referenced, sometimes the authors only reference a series, article, or individual book; but if you are interested the source along with some additional thoughts from the authors are available. For the sources they are citing, the authors use a typical endnote system.

This book is a call to action. The authors try to explain the current problems with our cities (and consequently our lives) and some of their solutions. They do a very good job explaining their views, and I believe present a very convincing argument that these problems do not have one source or solution. The authors present problems with our cities today as problems that cut across all economic, social, environmental, occupational & cultural boundaries; and that only traditional neighborhoods cut across all these boundaries to solve these problems. The authors do NOT say that only architects or city planners can solve the major problems facing society today. Quite the opposite; they say that only an educated citizenry can solve these problems if they act truly collectively, and the only mechanism that they have seen that brings people together (across the above-mentioned boundaries) is a "traditional neighborhood".

I don't believe the authors are Ludites or are in any way opposed to modern technology or science; however, their basic position is that we need to re-read the texts from 100 years ago and stop using the latest gee-whiz-bang theory to design our cities and guide our lives. If fact, they directly state that experimentation is good; but that we should experiment on the rich because if the latest theory is cracked, the rich can always afford to move! Unfortunately, the rich and powerful seem to know that not all of the latest theories come out perfect the first time, so modern society experiments on the poor, with the predictable results.

Everyone should read this book!

2-0 out of 5 stars accurate diagnosis, wrong solution
Like most socialists since Karl Marks, the authors of this book accurately diagnose the problem and then prescribe a solution that will only make things worse. Of course I agree that American suburbia is a horrible disaster. But what caused it? The authors hint at the answer which seems to be land use zoning instituted by local government. The authors also describe how this zoning leads to corruption, so large developers are the only ones who can survive in this corrupt and bureaucratic environment. And what remedy do the authors offer? Why, more and "better" government, of course. What they fail to mention is that most of the old towns and cities that they so admire were built without any of this regulation. What these old towns did was to do their job and let the private sector do its job. The job of local government is to take responsibility for public space and institutions. That means that local government, not private developers, should lay out and build the roads. Local government should build public parks, playgrounds, civic buildings, many nice public schools, etc. That is what local government used to do in the US. These days, instead of doing their job, local government (and all government for that matter) spend time meddling and interfering in the private sector. The nightmare that we all recognize as American suburbia is caused by both the fact that local government is not doing what it needs to do and that local government is preventing the private sector from doing what the private sector needs to do. Simply eliminating land use and density zoning would solve many of the problems described in this book.

Some quotes to describe the above: "If we truly want to curtail sprawl, we must acknowledge that automotive mobility is a no-win game, and that the only long-term solutions to traffic are public transportation and coordinated land use." What nonsense. Like most Leftists, the authors hate the freedom that the car has given people. Why can't we eliminate sprawl by having high density, pedestrian friendly towns interconnected with massive highways? There is no conflict between pedestrians and cars when the needs of each are satisfied separately. And another: "a federal initiative is needed to better coordinate those policies which now govern the apparently distinct objectives of affordable housing provision, business assistance, job creation, and social services." This big government nonsense speaks for itself.

So this book gets 2 stars for its accurate description of everything that is wrong with suburbia. But it is a depressing reminder that the only major forces in our country are corporate fascists and big government socialists. The enterprising spirit of individual freedom and civic duty that created those wonderful old towns and cities and all that was good in America is now extinct. ... Read more


7. Contemporary Urban Planning (6th Edition)
by John M. Levy
list price: $80.00
our price: $80.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0130985988
Catlog: Book (2002-07-31)
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Sales Rank: 90003
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Based on the author's extensive experience as a working planner, this book gives readers an insider's view of sub-state urban planning—the “nitty-gritty” details on the interplay of politics, law, money, and interest groups. The author takes a balanced, non-judgmental approach to introduce a range of ideological and political perspectives on the operation of political, economic, and demographic forces in city planning. Unlike other books on the subject, this one is strong in its coverage of economics, law, finance, and urban governance. It examines the underlying forces of growth and change and discusses frankly who benefits and loses by particular decisions.A four-part organization covers the background and development of contemporary planning; the structure and practice of contemporary planning; fields of planning; and national planning in the United States and other nations, and planning theory.For individuals headed for a career in planning. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Get a Broad spectrum of Urban Planning for the Beginner
This book gives a broad spectrum of what to expect in the planning field, but there are a few flaws. One is that the book is not written for the technocratic planner, it is written for the beginner or someone who is not going to make planning their career. But this book will give the beginner a broad basis to start from and for this I do suggest the beginner to read this before they choose planning as a career. ... Read more


8. Urban Sprawl and Public Health: Designing, Planning, and Building for Healthy Communities
by Howard Frumkin, Lawrence Frank, Richard Jackson
list price: $30.00
our price: $30.00
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Asin: 1559633050
Catlog: Book (2004-07-01)
Publisher: Island Press
Sales Rank: 63544
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9. Conservation Design for Subdivisions: A Practical Guide to Creating Open Space Networks
by Randall G. Arendt, Holly Harper, Natural Lands Trust, American Planning Association, American Society of Landscape Architiects
list price: $42.50
our price: $42.50
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Asin: 1559634898
Catlog: Book (1996-08-01)
Publisher: Island Press
Sales Rank: 61867
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In most communities, land use regulations are based on a limited model that allows for only one end result: the production of more and more suburbia, composed of endless subdivisions and shopping centers, that ultimately covers every bit of countryside with "improvements." Fortunately, sensible alternatives to this approach do exist, and methods of developing land while at the same time conserving natural areas are available.

In Conservation Design for Subdivisions, Randall G. Arendt explores better ways of designing new residential developments than we have typically seen in our communities. He presents a practical handbook for residential developers, site designers, local officials, and landowners that explains how to implement new ideas about land-use planning and environmental protection. Abundantly illustrated with site plans (many of them in color), floor plans, photographs, and renditions of houses and landscapes, it describes a series of simple and straightforward techniques that allows for land-conserving development.

The author proposes a step-by-step approach to conserving natural areas by rearranging density on each development parcel as it is being planned so that only half (or less) of the buildable land is turned into houselots and streets. Homes are built in a less land-consumptive manner that allows the balance of property to be permanently protected and added to an interconnected network of green spaces and green corridors. Included in the volume are model zoning and subdivision ordinance provisions that can help citizens and local officials implement these innovative design ideas. ... Read more

Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars More people need to read this book!
What a concept! Rather than trying to get the most acreage per lot, make smaller lots with more shared open space. A must read for every developer, planning board, and zoning commition. Easy to follow examples show how to preserve historic and environmental features while adding to the value of the land that is developed.

5-0 out of 5 stars Should be a guide for the future of subdivisions!
If we developed land in the manner the author teaches, America would look so much nicer! A very common sense approach to maintain rural character in an area and stop sprawl from destroying your area. Every developer, planner, new home buyer, builder, conservationist and private citizen should read this and also buy the author's book, "Rural By Design".

5-0 out of 5 stars excellent reference guide that will help combat urban sprawl
Cheers for Randall G. Arendt, et al. For years my government agency has been fighting a loosing battle in Florida with unmanaged and unfettered urban growth. It seemed as though nothing could stem the tide of urban sprawl until two things happened. One was an election of a more centralist government and the other was the introduction of "designing for conservation" into our policy making levels. This concept was brought into clear focus by Arendt's book. The authors not only presented a practical and economically sound guide for growth that can benefit developers, but the reference can act as a mechanism to help preserve the environmental cohesiveness of any community. The policy makers in our community were so impressed with this book that fifteen (15) copies were purchased to be placed into the hands of influential politicians, developers and regulatory agencies.

4-0 out of 5 stars this book is a blueprint for land development of the future.
As a land developer this book brought into focus the problems that haave been growing as more and more of the land in my area has been consumed, and we have less and less to develop. At first I thought it would be another environmental tirade against land development,but instead realised it was a very practical and economically sound guide for development that would benefit me and also help maintain the character of my community. Arendt's concern is for the environment and the preservation of open spaces and connective corridors of space and natural habitat between differing parcels of land in a given area. His solutions achieve these goals, but of special interest to me as a developer is that his solutions also mean no loss of density, reduced costs and higher land values. Excellent illustrations, easy to understand and worth the price many times over. ... Read more


10. The Art of Revitalization : Improving Conditions in Distressed Inner-City Neighborhoods (Contemporary Urban Affairs, Volume 12)
by SeanZielenbach, John W. Zielenbach
list price: $32.95
our price: $32.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0815335989
Catlog: Book (2000-04)
Publisher: Garland Publishing
Sales Rank: 220425
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This book discusses the revitalization of decayed inner-city neighborhoods.It explores the role of social capital in stabilizing and turning around distressed communities, and it highlights the roles that local actors can and do play in the revitalization process.
The Art of Revitalization takes two Chicago neighborhoods, Englewood and North Lawndale, as case studies.Zielenbach discusses them in the context of racial change and urban decay in Chicago since World War II.The account of the changing neighborhoods is fascinating and clear, and the strength of the author's portrayal of Chicago's transformation sets the stage for his detailed analysis.
... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Change Lives By Changing Neighborhoods
This book offers a detailed look at the agents of change in two Chicago neighborhoods. By rigorously analyzing the measures of improvement in the quality of life of these neighborhoods, the author increases our awareness and knowledge of how neighborhood change and stability occurs. I would recommend this book to anyone working in this field who wishes to broaden their knowledge and increase their effectiveness.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Importance of Community Development
Through statistical and qualitative analysis, this book illustrates the importance of community-wide development as a key to the economic rejuvenation of the inner city. The analysis is comprehensive and provides an excellent resource for individuals and entities involved in community development. ... Read more


11. HOME FROM NOWHERE: REMAKING OUR EVERYDAY WORLD FOR THE 21ST CENTURY
by James Howard Kunstler
list price: $14.00
our price: $10.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0684837374
Catlog: Book (1998-03-26)
Publisher: Free Press
Sales Rank: 58706
Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In his landmark book The Geography of Nowhere James Howard Kunstler visited the "tragic sprawlscape of cartoon architecture, junked cities, and ravaged countryside" America had become and declared that the deteriorating environment was not merely a symptom of a troubled culture, but one of the primary causes of our discontent.

In Home from Nowhere Kunstler not only shows that the original American Dream -- the desire for peaceful, pleasant places in which to work and live -- still has a strong hold on our imaginations, but also offers innovative, eminently practical ways to make that dream a reality. Citing examples from around the country, he calls for the restoration of traditional architecture, the introduction of enduring design principles in urban planning, and the development of public spaces that acknowledge our need to interact comfortable with one another. ... Read more

Reviews (20)

3-0 out of 5 stars disappointing sequel
I was enthralled by Kunstler's first book, _The Geography of Nowhere_, but extremely disappointed by _Home from Nowhere_. His strength in _The Geography of Nowhere_ was in pointing out the fatal flaws in post-war urban planning - that he is at once disgusted, cynical and passionate about city design made it a compelling read. But _Home from Nowhere_ falls flat as often happens when someone who is very good at finding problems decides to find solutions. Kunstler's proposals are often not helpful, and many (esp. in the area of property tax reform) have already been tried unsuccessfully in a few cities. Kunstler seems to have become a devotee of Andres Duany - but Duany's _Suburban Nation_ is a much more worthwhile read for those interested in eliminating suburban sprawl and poor urban planning.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mind Reader
"What's wrong with me? My home is neat and tidy (and big) and the neighborhood is tranquil, so why am I so BORED? How come my kids seem so aloof (comatose)? I'd go out, but even if there were no rush hour traffic I probably won't find a good parking spot." How many Americans have thought this? Jim Kunstler reads our minds and then deftly and humorously spells out why a "robust" economy hasn't done a thing to strengthen our lives and families. Folks, we don't know one another anymore because we're too doped up on all the "necessities" of life (Car, big-screen, cell-phone). Is traditional town planning the elixir we need to save us? Probably not. However, it becomes painfully clear after reading this indispensible book that suburban sprawl has done a lot more to us than contribute countless sterile neighborhoods to the landscape. This book, in many ways, has changed my life. GET IT...READ IT.

3-0 out of 5 stars passionate but uneven
This book started out on a strong note, with Kunstler's typically searing rhetoric and a well-written overview of what's wrong with American city and town planning. However, it soon deteriorated into undisciplined discussions about farming and the political saga of Saratoga Springs. Eventually, the book peters out almost completely, as Kunstler waxes nostalgic about his boyhood in New York and ends with a bizarre, egocentric soliloquy that has something to do with painting a McDonald's and biking to the YMCA.

I was disappointed with the unevenness of this book, especially after such a powerful, interesting beginning. Also, Kunstler's personality and opinions on certain issues are likely to turn some readers off; he frequently seems almost crotchety and bitter as he frowns on things like "teenage rebellion," rock & roll, and "black Nationalism." Although Kunstler's commitment to sound planning principles is admirable, his views on more complex sociopolitical issues are so simplistic as to just make him seem stupid (for example, he essentially denies the significance of systematic racial discrimination). Unfortunately, Kunstler makes it seem like he wants to go back to the ultimate '50s version of small-town life, complete with corner five-and-dime stores, ballgames in the Ramble, and cheery milk deliverymen. He does *not* seem to favor exciting urban development like the kind happening in Europe, since it might contain people "dressed in high top sneakers and a sideways hat."

I would recommend Kunstler's "The Geography of Nowhere" to this sequel. Or if you must read this book, maybe you could follow it up with something like William Upski Wimsatt's "Bomb the Suburbs," which at least shows an appreciation for the vibrancy of *modern* city life.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Urban Champion
James Kunstler has written what should be considered the 'new urbanism' manifesto. In 'Home From Nowhere', Kunstler tackles the many problems in urban America and offers some real world solutions and ideas. From the car-free urban core, to progressive zoning and urban taxation, he paves the road on how to strengthen and remodel our vital urban cores. I would highly recommend this book to any future or current urban city council members, or future or present state politicians. This is a great vision of what our urban areas could become, and Kunstler paints the picture in broad and realistic strokes. Five stars.

5-0 out of 5 stars Remodeling Hell
The author of this book is a novelist by trade, with eight completed works already under his belt. However, having had no formal architectural training, his understanding of the subject in general, and what we have done to the physical fabric of our country in specific, is profound, enlightening and deeply important. For despite what we might imagine, "buildings foster certain kinds of behavior in humans." And our rush to pave over the nation with strip malls, urban sprawl, industrial parks, and seven-lane freeways ("anti-places") all tend to suppress and distort our better natures.

Reading this book is both humorous and disheartening at the one and same time. It is humorous and easy to read, because the author's writing style is mature, articulate, and witty - clearly one of the quirks of his being a novelist. Disheartening, because it plainly documents how American cities have devolved into bleak, relentless, noisy, squalid, smoky, smelly, explosively expanding, socially unstable, dehumanizing sinkholes of industrial foulness congested with ragtag hordes of racing automobiles.

In response to the tragedy of our cities, we seek escape. After the war, most Americans jumped into the wagon and fled for the suburbs. However, even there we find no guarantee of spiritual or physical ease. Cut off from grocery stores, city-centers, cafes, and work, we end up spending half our life (not to mention half our income) "sitting inside a tin can on the freeway." We have become "a drive-in civilization," scuttling between non-descript office malls, "schools that look fertilizer factories," warehouse-like grocery stores, paved-over mega malls, and the congested cities we left behind in the first place - all because none of these places are within walking or biking distance after having fled to the suburbs.

In fact, life in the suburbs is so unsatisfactory that we seek alternate escape routes, having no other place to flee. The majority of our free time is spent glued in front of the TV screen or at the theatre, where we catch glimpses of a better world. When we are not in either of those places, we "escape to nature" via a weekend camping trip (because nature knows how to design esthetically-pleasing places) or head to Disneyland. Ah, Disneyland....

"The public realm in America became so atrocious in the postwar decades that the Disney Corporation was able to create an artificial substitute for it and successfully sell it as a commodity." Americans love Disney world, as the author points out, because it is only social terrain left that has not been colonized by the car. Although we may not realize it on a conscious level, "The design quality of Disney World ... is about 1.5 notches better than the average American suburban shopping mall or housing subdivision - so Americans love it." Yet this fantasy land is "ultimately less satisfying than reality, and only deepens our hunger for the authentic."

In essence, the book is one long screed against shoddy civic design, car-centered development, single-use zoning laws (a subject that enrages the author to the point of profanity), and loss of excellence and beauty in architectural design. In place of these, the author wishes to reinvigorate community connectivity, enliven the public sphere, enthrone commonsense zoning laws, and start designing beautiful, lasting structures - just like we used to. As the author reminds us, "In such a setting, we feel more completely human. This is not trival." The alternative? Continuing on the "garbage barge steaming off to Nowhere." ... Read more


12. Comeback Cities: A Blueprint for Urban Neighborhood Revival
by Paul S. Grogan, Tony Proscio
list price: $17.00
our price: $11.56
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0813339529
Catlog: Book (2001-12-01)
Publisher: Westview Press
Sales Rank: 77034
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

How and why America's inner cities have begun recovering from the pervasive crime and social disorder that plagued them only a decade ago.

Comeback Cities shows how innovative, pragmatic tactics for ameliorating the nation's urban ills have produced results beyond anyone's expectations, reawakening America's toughest neighborhoods. In the past, big government and business working separately were unable to solve the inner city crisis. Rather, a blend of public-private partnerships, grassroots nonprofit organizations, and a willingness to experiment characterize what is best among the new approaches to urban problem solving. Pragmatism, not dogma, has produced the charter school movement and the police's new focus on "quality-of-life" issues. The new breed of big city mayors has welcomed business back into the city, stressed performance and results at city agencies, downplayed divisive racial politics, and cracked down on symptoms of social disorder. As a consequence, America's inner cities are becoming vital communities once again.

Comeback Cities shows how innovative, pragmatic tactics for ameliorating the nation's urban ills have produced results beyond anyone's expectations, reawakening America's toughest neighborhoods. In the past, big government and business working separately were unable to solve the inner city crisis. Rather, a blend of public-private partnerships, grassroots nonprofit organizations, and a willingness to experiment characterize what is best among the new approaches to urban problem solving. Pragmatism, not dogma, has produced the charter school movement and the police's new focus on "quality-of-life" issues. The new breed of big city mayors has welcomed business back into the city, stressed performance and results at city agencies, downplayed divisive racial politics, and cracked down on symptoms of social disorder. As a consequence, America's inner cities are becoming vital communities once again.

There is much yet to be done, but Grogan and Proscio base their optimism on a number of trends that could dramatically multiply the impact of the grassroots community development industry. The authors point to unprecedented access to capital and credit, astonishing reductions in violent crime, and substantial overhauls of public housing, welfare, and public schools already underway as harbingers of an inner-city revival. Through a mixture of analysis and storytelling, Grogan and Proscio argue convincingly that the conditions are ripe - the infrastructure is in place - to turn a source of national shame into a source of national pride. ... Read more

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars well-researched and timely
As someone who worked for community development organizations and witnessed the revitalization of downtown Washington, DC over the past decade, I found this book fascinating. It examines the costs -- monetary and otherwise -- of urban blight and renewal. It examines the lives of people living without access to necessities like grocery stores due to safety, economics and other socioeconomic issues.

Such issues are examined at the individual, city and federal level. Success stories like Baltimore and the revitalization of its famous harbor, as well as the costs of Boston's infamous Big Dig are cited.

Anyone who has lived in an urban area anytime since the 1970s wil find this book well worht their time, and get them thinking about the plight of the urban space and its residents.

5-0 out of 5 stars On to Something?
Paul Grogan and Tony Proscio may be on to something - a completely new urban dynamic that has quietly evolved over the past 20 years or so - largely unnoticed except for those engaged in it. In a lively and entertaining style, the authors tell a remarkable story of four, sometimes discrete, but often coordinated trends that they say hold the promise of the rebirth of the nation's inner city neighborhoods.

The central thesis of "Comeback Cities" is that if lost inner city neighborhoods are to be reclaimed, the residents of those neighborhoods must do it. Until they themselves take responsibility - mainly through the creation of nonprofit community development corporations (CDCs) - nothing else seems to work. But these "engines of reclamation" are not enough - the authors say they need to be coupled with new policing techniques, deregulation of public systems, (i.e., welfare and public housing reform) and educational reforms to reach a "critical mass" and real improvement. Seems unlikely, - but in city after city, - New York, Boston, Cleveland, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Oakland, Houston, - the authors detail the extraordinary results achieved by the confluence of these four new forces.

The central question of course is whether these trends can gain sufficient traction to become the blueprint for reliable inner city revitalization. Or are they simply anecdotal random events, uniquely tied to local circumstance.

This compelling and insightful book examines these new trends and shows, especially in the synergy of their confluence, that meaningful revitalization is not only possible but also predictable. The evidence, skillfully woven into cogent argument, builds chapter on chapter. Without denying the importance of a booming economy or new energy from immigration, the authors make a credible case that but for these new forces - especially the local nonprofit CDCs - the successes they describe would not have been realized. And while they acknowledge the important role of HUD's Community Development Block Grant and HOME programs, and the Low Income Housing Tax Credit, (which provide the "fuel" for these engines), the authors rightly focus on the local nonprofit machinery as necessary for these programs to work. As a 30-year practitioner at the federal level, I can attest to the wisdom of this focus. The best outcomes seem to occur, as is borne out by the book, when the Federal government uses its leverage, instead of prescriptive programs, (e.g., the Low Income Housing Tax Credit, the CRA, FannyMae directed-mortgage commitments and so fourth), and the local level - using this Federal leverage - is free to design and implement appropriate solutions.

The writing is a pleasure: speaking, for example, of the Federal government's role in establishing the practice of "redlining" [excluding large demographic areas from access to mortgages] and the decades later passage of the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) [encouraging banks to lend in such areas], the authors comment:

"Consequently, to view the modern mortgage industry as an immaculate offspring of the unfettered private market - one whose dainty virtue was now threatened by an unprecedented federal groping [the CRA] - was disingenuousness raised to the level of parody. Perfect, in other words, for a congressional debate."

So fluid is the writing that one is barely aware of all the information actually coming off the page. Surprising nuggets, simple but powerful, are so easily told their significance might not be immediately appreciated. Just two of many examples: that poverty needn't be inexorably associated with disorder and slum conditions, - as demonstrated by the South Bronx story - deserves serious reflection. As does the lesson of how taking care of little things - like people jumping the fare stiles in the NY subway system - can pay major dividends:

"Collaring 'petty' offenders suddenly led to a harvest of arrests of serious criminals. One out of ten fare beaters turned out to be wanted on a felony warrant, and many others were carrying illegal firearms. In one stroke, Bratton had not only eliminated an appalling spectacle that was frightening the public and costing the transit system tens of millions in lost revenues annually, he was bagging large numbers of wanted felons in the bargain. As a billiard player would say, a three cushion shot. Crime in the subways fell off a cliff. Between 1990 and 1994 felonies dropped 75%, robberies by 64 percent."

But cities are complex entities, even "organic," and if there is any criticism, it may be that the writing is so clear and easy that some may think it belies an extraordinary energy required of these local citizens and officials to achieve these hard won victories. This would be a mistake. Certainly, effort and energy are required, but perhaps one of the lessons of this book, to put it simply, is that things go much easier with the right approach. In fact, no matter the energy expended, they might not "go" at all without it. This book is about the right approach.

Comeback Cities is superbly crafted. And, while optimistic, it is by no means a Pollyannaish book about the elimination of poverty, injustice, and how we can all get along. Speaking from "hands-on" experience the authors describe what they see, and take care not to overstate the case. This is an honest, balanced book that provides a sound basis for hope, with realistic recommendations to multiply the rebirth they document.

"The political challenge for cities and their supporters -and specifically for the next president and Congress-is to draw the national imagination towards the astonishing accomplishments already underway, the pace of those accomplishments, the intelligence that has led them, and the mounting opportunity they will create as they continue to pile up.".

Comeback Cities will fire this imagination. It is well worth the time of anyone interested - even if only remotely- in urban America. It avoids the normally dense "policy wonk stuff" and makes complex issues transparently accessible. It is must reading for academics, policymakers, and the general public.

Paul Grogan and Tony Proscio are definitely on to something.

5-0 out of 5 stars an altogether remarkable book--highly recommended
Though it leaves the reader acutely aware of the problems still facing America's core urban areas, "Comeback Cities" nonetheless instills a wave of optimism in the reader about the revivifying effects that grassroots community development organizations, new techniques of community policing, and deregulation in welfare, public housing and public schools have had in some of the nation's formerly moribund cities.

Grogan and Proscio take an anecdotal approach to their argument, which serves the book well. Where such an approach can sometimes mask a paucity of evidence, these authors have no such problem. Grogan and Proscio show that the phenomena they're discussing are just as visible in Cleveland and Boston as they are in San Francisco and Chicago. And each actual case they cite bolsters the book's argument: that bold, new approaches to age-old urban problems have recusitated patients that most prognosticators long ago said were dead on the operating table. Whether one considers HUD's mid-1990s recasting of the role and form of public housing in Chicago's Cabrini Green, William Bratton's widespread application of the "broken windows" method of community policing in Boston and New York City, or Cleveland Mayor Michael White's and Milwaukee Mayor John Norquist's audacious efforts to make public schooling in their respective cities more accountable, Grogan and Proscio clearly illustrate the key changes that are uplifting cities.

Another fantastic aspect of "Comeback Cities" is the multi-layered, nuanced approach the authors employ. Proscio and Grogan understand, and they make the reader understand, that community policing, community development corporations, economic deregulation, and public school accountability are all interrelated solutions to urban problems. Far too often, politicians and public policy commentators argue that such problems are individual and should be combatted individually and apart from the larger picture. Smartly, these authors show that such an approach is not only no longer possible, but that it may just have contributed to the deep-seated problems affecting cities in the first place.

Finally, the prose of "Comeback Cities" deserves an effusive salute. Where many planning books can be arrid and full of jargon, these authors are careful to boil down their arguments to their essential terms, while providing the appropriate and necessary background. "Comeback Cities" reads like the best journalism, and I must recommend it as one of the finest books I've read in months.

5-0 out of 5 stars Comeback Cities
Community development practitioners, grass roots activists, and others who have long worked to revitalize America's inner city neighborhoods know that change is afoot. The transformation is subtle and still uneven but palpable nevertheless. In recent years there have been positive improvements in the day to day lives of inner city residents across America. Here is a book thta tells us why it happens, where, and what we can do to support this trend.

Drawing on evidence from urban neighborhoods in different regions of the country and on their own substantial knowledge of the field, Paul Grogan and Tony Proscio identify key factors that have contributed to these positive changes. Several factors, including the revival of private markets in the inner city, have been identified by other experts in the field. Grogan and Proscio make an especially compelling case, however, that it is the confluence of factors - the right combination of effort and innovation - that makes for "Comeback Cities."

This book is a must-read for community and economic development practitioners, grass roots activists and others in both the public and private sectors who hope to create an urban agenda for the future. For those who are already on the front lines, this is an acknowledgment of hard-won accomplishments and a valuable road map for the future. ... Read more


13. The Dimensions of Parking
by Parking Consultants Council, Uli, NPA Parking Consultants Council
list price: $59.95
our price: $50.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0874208270
Catlog: Book (2000-10)
Publisher: Urban Land Institute
Sales Rank: 128077
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Book Description

Get the latest information on parking development and operations. Whether you plan to offer free or pay parking, you will learn best practices for how to plan, design, finance, build, and operate a parking facility. Updated throughout, this edition covers the impact of sport utility vehicles and lights trucks, and best practices in financing, parking at commuter and subway rail stations and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. ... Read more


14. The New Shape of Suburbia
by Adrienne Schmitz
list price: $79.95
our price: $79.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0874208971
Catlog: Book (2003-05)
Publisher: Urban Land Institute
Sales Rank: 558652
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Book Description

Capitalize on the lucrative market for suburban residential development. This new book describes how consumer demands are changing, strategies for overcoming NIMBYism, and the latest trends related to open space, infill and mixed housing development, increasing density, transportation, and street design. Seasoned developers provide insight into what works--and the traps to avoid--in developing single- and multifamily properties ranging in size from 22 units to large planned communities, both conventional and new urbanist, in price ranges from affordable to luxury. Eleven case studies of projects in the United States and abroad illustrate how others are incorporating these trends into innovative and financially successful developments. ... Read more


15. Balancing Nature and Commerce in Gateway Communities
by Jim Howe, Ed McMahon, Luther Propst, Edward McMahon
list price: $25.00
our price: $25.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1559635452
Catlog: Book (1997-06-01)
Publisher: Island Press
Sales Rank: 457367
Average Customer Review: 4.67 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Increasing numbers of Americans are fleeing cities and suburbs for the small towns and open spaces that surround national and state parks, wildlife refuges, historic sites, and other public lands. With their scenic beauty and high quality of life, these "gateway communities" have become a magnet for those looking to escape the congestion and fast tempo of contemporary American society.

Yet without savvy planning, gateway communities could easily meet the same fate as the suburban communities that were the promised land of an earlier generation. This volume can help prevent that from happening.

The authors offer practical and proven lessons on how residents of gateway communities can protect their community's identity while stimulating a healthy economy and safeguarding nearby natural and historic resources. They describe economic development strategies, land-use planning processes, and conservation tools that communities from all over the country have found effective. Each strategy or process is explained with specific examples, and numerous profiles and case studies clearly demonstrate how different communities have coped with the challenges of growth and development. Among the cities profiled are Boulder, Colorado; Townsend and Pittman Center Tennessee; Gettysburg, Pennsylvania; Tyrrell County, North Carolina; Jackson Hole, Wyoming; Sanibel Island, Florida; Calvert County, Maryland; Tuscon, Arizona; and Mount Desert Island, Maine.

Balancing Nature and Commerce in Gateway Communities provides important lessons in how to preserve the character and integrity of communities and landscapes without sacrificing local economic well-being. It is an important resource for planners, developers, local officials, and concerned citizens working to retain the high quality of life and natural beauty of these cities and towns. ... Read more

Reviews (3)

4-0 out of 5 stars A feel-good land use/planning guide
- A feel-good land use/planning guide produced by the Conservation Fund and the Sonoran Institute. Examples show how communities can work together to protect parks and environmental refuges..

5-0 out of 5 stars Balancing economics and the environment
National parks and other public lands are big, fragile, economic engines for nearby gateway communities. In this book, communities and near-by public lands sometimes play nice together. The authors conclude: " . . . successful communities have transcended the 'growth versus no-growth' wars that characterize land-use policy in many cities and towns."

5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent resource
Balancing Nature and Commerce in Gateway Communities is a must read for anyone who still believes that environmentalism and economic development are fundamentally opposed propositions. This book of case studies and analysis describes several successful ways in which communities created new jobs and economic opportunities while celebrating and protecting, rather than exploiting, their area's natural resources. ... Read more


16. Shaping Melbourne's Future? : Town Planning, the State and Civil Society
by John Brian McLoughlin
list price: $85.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0521413346
Catlog: Book (1993-01-18)
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Sales Rank: 704378
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Book Description

Land use planning policy receives much public attention: we are constantly reading about the funding for infrastructure, the revitalisation of commercial centres, the rapid rate of urban decay, gentrification of the inner cities, and the problem of the expanding urban fringe. This study examines the effects of town planning on the shape and structure of the Melbourne metropolitan area since the Second World War. It shows that Melbourne's planners have seldom achieved what they set out to do and describes the technocratic character of town planning in Victoria. Shaping Melbourne's Future?relates town planning and urban developments to the social and economic base which defines them, touching on the broader themes of history, sociology, geography and politics. ... Read more


17. Building Communities from the Inside Out: A Path Toward Finding and Mobilizing a Community's Assets
by John P. Kretzmann, John L. McKnight
list price: $25.00
our price: $13.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 087946108X
Catlog: Book (1997-03-01)
Publisher: ACTA Publications
Sales Rank: 16467
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Kretzmann and McKnight help us see through new eyes.
Building Communities from the Inside Out guides readers to a new, asset-based approach to community building that proves everyone has a gift to share. The book offers practical advice, helpful tools, and powerful stories that help us see communities in new ways--as treasure troves of talent. Kretzmann and McKnight's front-line experience working with neighborhoods across America has created a vital tool for transforming city blocks into neighborhoods and isolated residents into change agents. For anyone who longs to make a difference, this book is a MUST! I am a partner in a consulting firm that guides healthy community initiatives across America--this book is one of my most valued resources.

5-0 out of 5 stars Revolutionary new paradigm for community development
Graphics a little clunky. Besides that, this is an outstanding book, with outstanding success stories and ideas, on building local "capacity" to handle projects. Everyone in the field, in my area, is excited about the ideas in this book. The authors are even better in person. You cannot understand the field without the ideas in this book. ... Read more


18. The Deliberative Practitioner: Encouraging Participatory Planning Processes
by John F. Forester
list price: $28.00
our price: $28.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0262561220
Catlog: Book (1999-10-29)
Publisher: The MIT Press
Sales Rank: 448350
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"This book represents the culmination of a decade's work and succeeds. Forester, perhaps the finest planning theorist in the U.S., uses a variety of case studies to show how his ideas about deliberation shape planning practice. He speaks to the problems and worries of practitioners and students of planning in all types of public settings. This book will likely prove popular as a text in planning schools and appeal to professionals in a variety of allied disciplines." -- Charles J. Hoch, Professor, Urban Planning and Policy Program, University of Illinois at Chicago

Citizen participation in such complex issues as the quality of the environment, neighborhood housing, urban design, and economic development often brings with it suspicion of government, anger between stakeholders, and power plays by many--as well as appeals to rational argument. Deliberative planning practice in these contexts takes political vision and pragmatic skill. Working from the accounts of practitioners in urban and rural settings, North and South, John Forester shows how skillful deliberative practices can facilitate practical and timely participatory planning processes. In so doing, he provides a window onto the wider world of democratic governance, participation, and practical decisionmaking. Integrating interpretation and theoretical insight with diverse accounts of practice, Forester draws on political science, law, philosophy, literature, and planning to explore the challenges and possibilities of deliberative practice. ... Read more

Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Searching for theory behind praxis
Once I started reading this book I could not put it aside for long. Perhaps this is because so many of the insights that the author offers on what practioners of deliberative planning and rural development actually do resonates so much with the work I am involved with in Indonesia and the Philippines.

Unlike many other books I have read on planning and development, this book relates stories of planners' real world experiences. It appears that most of the skills practitioners use to deal with the diversity of interests in the face of conflict are rarely taught in universities or textbooks. One wonders where practitioners learn what they do best.

While a solid professional background is necessary, planners must also use improvisation to deal with deliberative processes which involve many stakeholders. What I enjoyed most about this book, unlike many others, is that it contrasts rationality with emotional sensitivity, calculation with improvisation, all of which are necessary for good practice.

The author aslo addresses an often overlooked aspect of deliberative processes in the design professions, that is, how to balance pragmatism in contexts where there has been a history of injustice towards particular groups.

The book makes use of extensive practical experiences of real-life planners and attempts to draw theory from that praxis. These experiences are just as fascinating to read as the authors' insights into theory. It's like being immersed into a deliberative dialogue.

5-0 out of 5 stars Planning in a Pluralist World
As Forester explains in his Introduction makes, the title of his book is an intentional reference to Don Schön's path breaking The Reflective Practitioner. To use a trite cliché, that his book begins where Schön's book left off. There is, on the one hand, a remarkable similarity between the way Schön frames the situation the planner faces on the one hand, and Forester's description of the planner's world and his concept of deliberation on the other. The difference is in Forester's upfront, no-illusion understanding of the conflict-ridden nature of the world of planners and policy makers. Where Schön's reflection-in-action can, perhaps somewhat unfairly, be read as an improvement of the received view of professional knowledge as the sage expert who solves complex problems for clients in need, Forester has no illusions anymore about the moral and instrumental bankruptcy of the expert model. This becomes nowhere as clear as when we look at the examples each author uses. Where Schön uses one-on-one encounters between a psychotherapist and his supervisee, or an architect and his student, Forester examples include a bitter, entrenched fight over urban development in the Oslo harbour, a black home buyer counsellor in the overtly racist environment of a low income white settlement house, or housing improvement among poor campesinos in rural Venezuela.

Between Schön's and Forester's book lie almost twenty years of massive social, economic and political change, and, in its wake, almost twenty years of disenchantment, if not disillusion, with the role of politicians, administrators, and experts in the public domain. The world that Forester's planners or today's administrators inhabit is the fragmented, pluralistic, adversarial world that has eroded the steering capacity of central governments and that transferred policymaking power to a fragmented field of social and political actors. It is a world that has become so complex and tightly coupled, that the only thing that seems certain to policy makers is that their actions will generate massive unforeseen effects. A world in which the "privileged" knowledge of experts time and again dramatically fails to foresee or solve social and technical problems, and in which, consequently, citizens no longer take the authority of experts for granted. A world, moreover, in which debates about policy solutions are often less about the effectiveness of solutions as about the nature of the problem or the identity of the parties involved. As Forester makes clear, any theory of planning or policymaking or public administration that aspires to even a modicum of social or political relevance, has somehow to come to terms with this world. Listen to the way Forester, subtly commenting upon Schön, sets the stage for his book: "As planners work in between interdependent and conflicting parties in the face of inequalities of power and political voice, they have to be not only personally reflective but politically deliberative too."(1999: 2) Planners, in order to be effective in this pluralist and conflicted world, have no choice but to work with others in an open, transparent and mutually respecting way.

So what does democratic deliberation in the real world of politics and administration entail? Without being exhaustive, let me just touch upon some of the more startling insights of this rich and rewarding book. First, deliberation is more than debate and dialogue; more than the opportunity of being heard. (1999: 115) It is above all active participation in joint problem solving situations. Despite the practical stance of the book, it's key argument is epistemic and circles around the twin notions of unpredictability and complexity. Actors have no choice but to immerse themselves in the messiness, ambiguity, and open-endedness of practical situations. Not only are they literally captives of the everyday world, but the social-technical complexity of most public problems is such that it discounts any general problem solving strategy, and demands from the actors' immersion in the rich, diffuse detail of concrete situations. Knowledge, thus, is essentially local and relational.

In line with the book's epistemic theme, Forester argues that an important part of participatory inquiry consists of telling stories as a special, pragmatic kind of knowing. Much has been written in the last two decades about the role of stories in providing meaning to unstructured, conflictual situations. Forester is particularly insightful about the central role of storytelling in working through everyday political situations. Stories, he tells us, are not mere representations of meetings or encounters between planners and their clientele. Instead, stories are generative; they open up possibilities and close off unwanted or unfeasible lines of action by helping the actors narratively explore the complexities and contradictions of the situation at hand as it is situated in its proximal and distal environment. As Forester puts it, with a particularly happy phrase, stories do all sorts of moral and practical "work": "descriptive work of reportage, moral work of constructing character and reputation (of oneself and others), political work of identifying friends and foes, interests and needs, and the play of power in support and opposition, and, most important. ...deliberative work of considering means and ends, values and options, what is relevant and significant, what is possible and what matters, all together." (1999: 29) Stories are, thus, the prime means for practical judgement. They retain the rich detail that we need for a valid assessment of the situation at hand, yet, by situating the concrete event in a wider moral and causal landscape, stories allow us to connect the particular with the general, the concrete situation with the more general standard. In addition stories allow the actor to explore the emotional dimensions of his actions, both for himself and for others.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Listen to Stories, Learn in Practice"
John Forester's latest book entitled "The Deliberative Practitioner encouraging Participatory Planning Process", (MIT press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, London, England, 1999) develops the key ideas of his earlier writings on participatory planning processes by examining the challenges and difficulties of planning in the midst of contested power relationships.

Forester perceives planning as the effort to build consensus towards commonly perceived goals. Since the context of the planning is always fraught with differences, conflicts and inequalities, a planning process necessarily shapes opinion, creates value, transforms not just material conditions but human relationships.

The emphasis on democracy and participation is central to Foresters search for effective planning practices. Keenly sensitive to a world 'riddled with racial violence and discrimination with vast differences in levels of political organization and mobilization', Forester highlights the significance of public deliberations that give space to plural voices and strengthen democratic practices. Adversarial situations are not predetermining. They can be negotiated towards collaborative action. Deliberative planning is seen as a process of learning together to craft strategies towards greater community good. Forester's concern with planning focuses on the issues of rationality, emotional sensitivity and moral vision. Forester defines rationality as an interactive and argumentative process of marshalling evidence and giving reasons. By ethics, Forester understands not a system of fixed codes and predetermined standards, but the continuous allocation and recognition of value inherent in every pragmatic choice assessable by its quality of action and consequences. Emotional sensitivity is seen as a source of knowledge and recognition. "Deliberative practitioner" highlights these issues in a 'live' way by using 'stories' as a narrative method because stories deepen our understanding of planning as a human interaction. Stories bring into play our dual roles of actor and critic, crucial to planning. By capturing situations in their complexity, Forester sensitizes our perceptions to the significance of many non-formal processes and the elements of unpredictability and surprise in planning cautioning against a 'rush to interpretation' and simplistic cure-alls.

Forester's book makes significant contributions to the discussion on participatory planning. The stories he selects indicate how planners can through their technical inquiry, explicit value inquiry, and learning about social identities succeed in a pragmatic synthesis of rationality, ethical judgements and emotional sensitivities. Forester's book has special relevance to developing contexts, fraught with unevenness, caught between their indigenous cultures and the new cultures that the culture of external development aid brings with it. Development projects in such contexts, under the pressure of measurable, time-bound performance indicators, tend to abandon the process of deliberative planning. Forester's book reminds the planners in contexts of developing economies, of the need for culturally-sensitive planning process if sustainable development has to happen. It underscores the possibility and need of cross-context learning. It also reminds that in a situation of unequal relationship, participatory planning can be said to be successful only if existing relationship have been transformed through greater transfer of power to those who are the subjects of planning. Forester's book creates an effective, innovative way of educating planner, using theory and practice, the general and the particular, to mutually illuminate each other. Finally, and most importantly, it bridges the gap between theory and practice in a way that makes practice insightful and theory relevant, each enriching the other. It restores the practitioner to the centrality of planning discourse, and in doing so, the importance of people in planning. ... Read more


19. Readings in Planning Theory
by Scott Campbell, Susan S. Fainstein
list price: $43.95
our price: $36.04
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0631223479
Catlog: Book (2003-01-01)
Publisher: Blackwell Publishers
Sales Rank: 251935
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The second edition of this very successful volume examines the current state of planning theory and the new directions it has taken in recent years. The editors have selected a set of classic and contemporary writings to address a central question: What role can planning theory play in making the good city and region within the constraints of a capitalist political economy and a democratic political system? The volume draws on a wide range of authors who address planning history, challenges to public planning, competing planning styles, planning ethics, the public interest and issues such as race and gender. Some contributors also challenge conventional planning theory from postmodernist, communicative and feminist perspectives. Readings new in this edition also examine themes emerging in planning theory, including a critique of the modernist roots of centralized planning, a reemphasis on space in planning, and a discussion of the difficulty of sustainable development. The second edition also features new case studies with a focus on both American and international cases.In the second edition of Readings in Planning Theory the editors retain 10 of the 28 original readings from the first edition. Four other readings have been updated with more recent writings from the same author (the opening introduction; Fainstein; Krumholz; Healey). Thirteen readings are wholly new. ... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars The cornerstones of planning theory
The autors present a superb choice of classical texts on the field of urban planning. I recommend it to all of those who want a good reference on some of the most important ideas that have shaped this field until now.

5-0 out of 5 stars A very good selection
This book is a very good beginning for a student interested in urban and regional planning. The selections are great, one example is the classic article from Lindblom "The science of muddling through", with several arguments in favor to 'incrementalism'. Another classic is Davidoff's "Advocacy and pluralism in planning", and the text from Beauregard, Krumholz, Healy and Harvey. ... Read more


20. Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design
by Timothy Crowe
list price: $59.95
our price: $59.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 075067198X
Catlog: Book (2000-03-16)
Publisher: Butterworth-Heinemann
Sales Rank: 629842
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design, Second Edition is a vital book for anyone involved in architectural design, space management, and urban planning. The concepts presented in this book explain the link between design and human behavior. Understanding this link can enable a planner to use natural environmental factors to minimize loss and crime and to maximize productivity.

This practical guide addresses several environmental settings, including major event facilities, small retail establishments, downtown streets, residential areas, and playgrounds. A one-stop resource with explanations of criminal behavior and the historical aspects of design, it teaches both the novice and the expert in crime prevention how to use the environment to affect human behavior in a positive manner.

Fully updated with substantial new material in each chapter
Useful illustrations describe the design and layout concepts in an easy to understand manner
Written by a well-qualified author in the field of crime prevention
... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Must Read For Practitioners
The CPTED Strategies introduced and well laid out in this book, establish a foundation for creative target hardening and risk transference.
To suggest as one critic does, that this is "low level" stuff is to miss the point entirely.
As a security consultant, I have applied these concepts to a variety of corporate settings with positive results.
If someone is simply looking for standard "templates" without the capacity to creatively apply the ideals this is not the book.
If you are serious about your work, it is essential.

3-0 out of 5 stars A pedestrian approach to security design
This book has pretty low level info.

If you are looking for ways to secure a high level executive's office suite using the principles of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design, forget it. The examples in this book are more at the level of bus stops.

Hopefully the authors will update their information with modern design scenarios. ... Read more


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