I read an article from Next City about Detroit’s intent to solicit proposals for livable community projects. According to Next City, Detroit’s intent is to compare these projects to their zoning ordinance and modify its regulations to improve its ability to produce livable communities. I wrote a comment below the blog and called it "Repeating Success within the Shelter Division of The Built Domain", but felt it needed further explanation.
Detroit’s concept contains two inherently weak assumptions. (1) That the projects will prove successful. (2) That the existing ordinance contains a comprehensive list of regulation topics that do not conflict and will ensure repeated success once their provisions are adjusted.
The concept of research is admirable, but the city can simply measure existing successful and unsuccessful projects once they know what to measure, how to correlate these measurements, how to compare results, how to use conclusions to predict the future shelter capacity of any land area, and how to write a zoning ordinance that correlates the design specification topics and values required. At this point they will be prepared to defend conclusions and plan for the future physical, social, psychological, environmental, and economic welfare (quality of life) of the city.
For further information, please see my blog at wmhosack.com and the following books for measurement and forecasting tools that can be used to repeat success within the Shelter Division of The Built Domain. (1) The Science of City Design: Architectural Algorithms for City Planning and Design leadership, and (2) Land Development Calculations: Interactive tools for Site Planning, Analysis, and Design. Book (1) can be found in both paperback and e-book versions on Amazon.com. Book (2) should only be purchased in the hardback version. The e-book does not contain the CD tool explained and attached to the hardbound version.
The goal is to shelter growing human populations within a limited Built Domain that protects their quality and source of life - The Natural Domain.Accomplishing the goal will require a commitment to establish a symbiotic relationship with the planet over time.