Urbanscapes aims to foster strong collaboration across different practice areas focused on the challenges of delivering innovative and well-designed urban spaces and places that can serve as catalysts for creating productive, livable, inclusive and vibrant cities. Members share ideas and material related to the following: Public Urban Spaces: the urban spaces within the public realm such as parks, plazas, streets, waterfronts and public buildings; Urban Fabric and Placemaking: the physical environment and their associated economic and social activities; Cityscapes: the city through the broader lens of urban planning, urban design and architecture, which contributes to the overall urban environment and systems; and Streetscapes: the detailed aesthetic and functional design elements of streets and public spaces, including roads, facades, lighting, landscaping, street furniture and pavement etc., that come together to form the character of public spaces.
In the 1990s, Phu My Hung (PMH) was undeveloped swampland located seven kilometers to the south of downtown Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC). Today, PMH is one of the most coveted residential areas in Vietnam and its transformation is referenced as a national model for urban development. PMH was one of the first land-based financing projects since Vietnam’s reunification in 1975.
The Porto Maravilha Urban Regeneration Project used the sale of development rights to transform a decaying industrial waterfront in Rio de Janeiro into a vibrant mixed-use zone with renewed urban infrastructure, while preserving its historical identity and heritage.
In the early 1980s, the Province of Ontario (Canada), sought to improve the quality of life in communities where development and intensification were taking place and to address the need for additional public services and infrastructure that resulted from increasing populations.
In every city, the urban spaces that form the public realm—ranging from city streets, neighborhood squares, and parks to public facilities such as libraries and markets—account for about one-third of the city’s total land area, on average.