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Urban Design: Theory and Practice (Edmonton) Certificate in Urban Design May 5-6, 2010 CITY 780 Sponsored by SFU City Program and the City of Edmonton / Telephone 778-782-5254

Course Package This document: • Course Agenda • Instructor Biographies • Participant List • Assignment and Policies • Evaluation Form Online Resources: ( • • • Book: •

Electronic Copy of this booklet Instructor Presentations Dynamic Urban Design Resource Book Dynamic Urban Design–Place, Process, and Plans, Michael von Hausen 


Agenda Urban Design: Theory and Practice (Edmonton) May 5-6, 2010

Urban design has become an increasingly important discourse in the daily life of communities, big and small. It has been practiced by a number of specialists-including architects, landscape architects, planners, and a few professionals trained as urban designers. Today there is an increasing awareness that buildings, spaces and projects should "fit" within a broader social, economic and physical context. Relationships matter. To achieve this new harmony, this intensive course will draw from a variety of disciplines which influence urban design-including architecture, ecology, economics, engineering, real estate development, landscape architecture, planning and sociology. Co-sponsored by the City Program, Simon Fraser University and the City of Edmonton.

DAY 1: Wednesday, May 5, 2010 8:30 am 9:15 am

Welcome and Introductions/Interests/Expectations (Michael von Hausen) Urban Design: W5 (Michael von Hausen) • A review of images: Where are we in Alberta urban design? • Basic elements: who and what is most important? Interdisciplinary roles

10:15 am 10:30 am

Break Evolution of Urban Design: Time, Players, and Contributions (Michael von Hausen) • The history of urban design with emphasis on the 20th Century. • The theoretical contributions by individuals: physical, psychological, ecological, political, economic, and social aspects. • Emerging elements of urban design: What are they and how do they apply?

11:30 am 12:30 pm

Lunch Field Exercise: Place Test and Applying Typologies to a Place (Michael von Hausen and City of Edmonton planner) (City Centre Plaza in front of City Hall) Break Group Evaluations and Design Improvements Example of Elements of Good Urban Design Discussion: Students bring examples to discuss Adjournment

2:00 pm 2:15 pm 3:15 pm 5:00 pm


DAY 2: Thursday, May 6, 2010 8:30 am

Suburbia and Rural Urban Design (Michael von Hausen) • Differences and similarities between urban and non-urban design? • Exploring approach alternatives: Reverse Process approach. • Review of Alberta and other case studies and features of small town urban design and suburban transformation

10:00 am 10:15 am 10:45 am 11:30 am 12:30 pm 1:00 pm 3:00 pm 4:30 pm 5:00 pm

Break Group Exercise: Design Review Summary of Findings Lunch Design Studio: Urban Design Edmonton Downtown Site Group work Group Presentations Concluding discussion and Complete Evaluations Adjournment (Name Tag Return)


Instructor Biographies Urban Design: Theory and Practice (Edmonton) May 5-6, 2010

Michael von Hausen, MLAUD, MCIP, BCSLA, Associate, City Program SFU, Chief Instructor and Curriculum Coordinator, Urban Design Certificate Program, SFU; President, MVH Urban Planning & Design, Inc. Michael von Hausen brings 25 years of teaching, training, and working across North America in the areas of land development planning, finance, and urban design. His latest handbooks “Dynamic Urban Design: Place, Process, and Plans” and “Eco-Plan: Community Ecological Planning and Design” outline his innovative planning and urban design methods. He has also recently completed “Real Estate Economics in Urban Design: Civic Economics Role in Place-Making” in cooperation with the Real Estate Foundation of B.C. and Simon Fraser University. He has also published highly recognized research on Alternative Land Development Standards in British Columbia Municipalities, focusing on tools for sustainable municipal infrastructure. His graduate work at Harvard University specialized in real estate development economics and urban design. Michael von Hausen is also President of MVH Urban Planning & Design Inc., an international consulting practice in sensitive land development planning, sustainable urban design, and community partnerships in Canada, United States, Mexico, and Russia. Mr. von Hausen’s professional work has received national and international recognition. His recent work includes: • Gasoline Alley and Liberty Crossing Urban Design Plan, Red Deer County, Alberta; • The 150 hectare Weyerhaeuser Comprehensive Development Plan, Ucluelet; • The Willoughby Heritage Area and Town Centre Plan, Township of Langley; • The Rainbow Resident Neighbourhood, Whistler; • The 100 year urban design strategy for Midtown Calgary; • The Lower Twelfth Street Area Plan for the City of New Westminster; • The Maplewood Eco-Industrial Development and Sustainable Community project for the District of North Vancouver; • A Smart Zoning template for four municipalities on Vancouver Island; • An affordable housing strategy for the District of Hope; • The redevelopment of CFB Chilliwack – Garrison Crossing; • An urban design strategy for Chemainus; and • A 2,500-hectare eco-resort master plan in Cancun, Mexico. MVH Urban Planning & Design Inc. Projects won five planning and design awards in 2005 and 2006. The award winning projects included the Weyerhaeuser project in 5

Ucluelet, the Garrison Crossing project in Chilliwack, the Maplewood Eco-Industrial Project, and the Lower Twelfth Street Area Plan for the City of New Westminster. Michael can be reached at or view his website at

Frank Ducote , B. Arch, MCP, MCIP, Principal, Frank Ducote Urban Design Frank Ducote is the Principal of Frank Ducote Urban Design. Resuming private practice after 18 years at the municipal level, Frank is currently consulting to the City of North Vancouver on two planning and urban design studies for the Lonsdale Town Centres and the Civic precinct. He is also acting on behalf of his former employer, the City of Vancouver, as a consultant to TransLink for the joint federal/regional/municipal Showcase project for the Main Street corridor in Vancouver, now under construction, and other streetscape and urban design projects. An expert in conducting design charrettes and facilitating design workshops, Frank is currently involved in re-visioning and master planning initiatives efforts for the historic precinct of Steveston, BC, a wide range of public and private sector clients in Western Canada. He continues to teach urban design courses at Simon Fraser University's downtown campus, and also at Langara College. From 1993-2004, Frank was the Senior Urban Designer, City of Vancouver Planning Department, where he was responsible for urban design services for both the City Plans and Central Area divisions. Projects and accomplishments include, among others: • Oakridge/Langara Policy Statement • City of Vancouver Transportation Plan – responsible for the traffic calming policy • Millennium Line SkyTrain stations and 3 station precinct public realm plans • Neighbourhood Centre Delivery Program – responsible for streetscape and public realm • Redesign of Commercial Drive, between Grandview Highway North and 12th Ave. • Redesign of Kingsway at Knight Street (construction: 2005) • Redesign of West Pacific Boulevard (Allan Jacobs/Elizabeth Macdonald, consultants) • Broadway/Commercial mixed-used zones design guidelines • East Fraserlands planning study - combination of brownfield and greenfield development for a new complete residential community for 10,000 people (Rick Hulbert and Don Wuori, consultants) • Richmond/Airport/Vancouver (RAV) project – preliminary station area studies and waterfront transit hub urban design studies • Neighbourhood Centres community vision workshops in Kensington/Cedar Cottage, Renfrew/Collinwood, Riley Park, and Kerrisdale • Transport Canada Showcase Program – Main Street transit/pedestrian priority study, transit village study • Granville Street Mall redesign (Allan Jacobs & Hotson/Bakker/Boniface/Haden, consultants) • Southeast False Creek Sustainable Community planning study (Hotson/Bakker/Boniface/Haden, urban design consultants)


Assignment Urban Design: Theory and Practice (Edmonton) May 5-6, 2010

Place Making in Urban Design: Place and Urban Design Review A. Course Overview The Theory and Practice Course provides an introduction, overall context, and framework for urban design. It also provides a foundation of key theoretical concepts and developments that inform current urban design practice. B. Assignment Learning Objectives • Apply the theoretical knowledge and concepts gained in the course lectures, materials, and walking tours; • Explore the concepts of “Place-Making” through the application of course materials (e.g., PLACE Test) to a specific site; • Test the Design Review Checklists to improve objective site evaluation skills; • Examine the Principles and Elements of urban design as they apply to a particular site; and • Begin to develop an urban design vocabulary and visual awareness by communicating the PLACE assessment in a concise report. C. Assignment Description Context: Your consulting firm has been hired as an Urban Design Consultant to analyze a PLACE within the municipality that you live (or work). The municipality has received a grant to improve the place through a generous donation but does not know where to start. The Director of Planning has determined that the first fundamental requirement is to complete a Site Assessment to determine the next steps for the site and an eventual Urban Design Plan. If you do an excellent job on this first assignment, chances are you will be hired to do further detailed analysis and, eventually, the Urban Design Plan. Step 1 - Site Selection: Select a site that is of special interest to you that has a substantial history of development and associated urban design. This can be a work-related site and something that can lend itself to further work through other courses in the Urban Design Program. Step 2 - Data Gathering and Site Observation: Review the readings that accompanied the class, then carefully observe the site at different times of the day. Use the PLACE Test questions in your readings to enhance your observation of the site. Gather other social, economic, and physical information that will complete the data required to properly analyze the site. Remember to sketch and photograph to capture elements that the naked eye would have difficulty capturing. 7

Note the discoveries you make that are not obvious through normal observation, either through photography, off-hour site observation, and archival research or otherwise. Step 3 – Analysis: Try to determine what makes the PLACE special, what may be missing, and what improvements you would recommend. Use the Urban Design Checklist in Chapter 5 to analyze the site. Also, consider the 10 Principles of Urban Design, Elements of Urban Design, and Sustainable Urban Design Project Indicators in your readings to aid your analysis. Step 4 – Synthesis: Translate your observations and analysis into a concise document for review. The table of contents should include: Cover Page, Table of Contents, Summary, Place Information Gathering, Place Analysis and Design Review, Conclusions, Recommendations, and Appendix as necessary. Diagrams, maps, sketches, and photographs should supplement the written information. D. Time and Effort The Urban Design Certificate Program expects that participants, on average, spend 8-10 hours on each course assignment. Plan your site visits, analysis, and report preparation accordingly. E. References in Reading Material • Chapter 1: Definition and Approach • Chapter 2: History and Theory • Chapter 3: Elements of Urban Design- Elements, Place Test, and Sustainable Urban Design Indicators • Chapter 5: Urban Design Review F. Site Selection Considerations • Learning Objectives: Review the assignment learning objectives (Section B) above; • Site Relevance: Choose a site that is “dynamic” in that it has a rich history and relevance to urban design; • Continuity: Consider a site that can provide a basis for other assignments such as Urban Design Analytic Tools and Urban Design Economic Fundamentals; • Challenge: Select a site that challenges your gifts and talents to advance to the next level of complexity; • Time Allocation: Allocate your time carefully to be efficient yet spend the necessary time for a comprehensive analysis. • Convenience: Choose a site that you can visit a number of times so you can obtain a clear “reading” of the site and its context. • Information Availability: Ensure that there is sufficient information available.


G. Inventory and Analysis Considerations • Careful Site Observations: Obtain different perspectives - car, pedestrian, day, night, rainy, and sunny. • See Through Different Lenses: Ensure that your have a camera, sketchpad, and drawing equipment with you to capture the essence of the moment in different media. It is amazing what you will find out by translating your information through different media. These tools will give you different “lenses” to observe the site. • Photographic Record: Make sure that you record the position and direction of your photographs on a map or plan for future reference and your Visual Analysis Map. • Sketch Book: Begin to use your sketchbook to record different feelings about the site (e.g. enclosure, vistas, unique buildings and landmarks). Also sketch diagrams that reflect spatial relationships on the site (e.g., buildings to open space, dimensions of pathways and spaces). • Interviews: Try to chat with people to get their views on the PLACE. • Historical Records: Examine historical maps and photos of the area to understand its evolution. • Government Policy Information: Ensure that you review the policies (Official Community Plan, Zoning Bylaw etc.) that effect the past, present, and future use of the site; (Note any potential Provincial or Federal Policies – for example Stream Stewardship and Ocean Waterfront). • People Watch: Observe the people and demographics during different times of day. Record numbers and types of interaction (what William Whyte refers to as “smoozing”). Where are they? What are they doing? How long do they stay? • Overlay Interpretations: Explore different ways to clearly express your findings and overlay different aspects such as views, slopes, solar orientation, and people density. You will discover how this multiple analysis by overlays (use trace paper) will reveal the opportunities and constraints of the PLACE. • Retesting: Remember to measure twice and cut once, as all experienced carpenters do. Visit the site more than once to confirm your analysis and refine it. H. Assignment Evaluation Criteria • 50% Content: Application of theoretical concepts, especially the PLACE Test, and Urban Design Checklist, as well as considering the Urban Design Principles, Elements of Urban Design in analyzing the site; • 30% Communication: Concise communication of the most important information relevant to the site in an easy-to-read and clear format using sketches, maps, and photos where appropriate; and • 20% Overall Quality: Care and professionalism in presentation.


I. Further Support • SFU Staff Resources: As noted in your orientation package. • Instructor Availability: Limited to specific clarification questions normally screened through SFU Staff. • Buddy Program: We strongly suggest that you “Buddy” up with a fellow student to help clarify assignments and explore further creative ideas. J. Final Note This assignment is designed to improve your knowledge, skills, and abilities in urban design. Your assignments should enhance your professional development and create a collection of products that you can use in your “Urban Design Portfolio”. Do the best that you can do, challenge yourself, explore new boundaries, have fun, and learn something special in this assignment.


Assignment Policies Take-home assignments will be given to participants at the end of each course and must be completed and submitted to the City Program at the end of each semester. For courses held September–December 2009, the assignment deadline is January 15, 2010. For courses held January–June 2010, the assignment deadline is June 15, 2010. As a general guideline, participants are expected to spend approximately eight to ten hours completing each assignment. Grading: A+, A, A Excellent performance B+, B, BGood performance C+, C, CSatisfactory performance F Unsatisfactory performance Three-day courses are Pass or Fail. How do you submit assignments? Mail hardcopies of your assignments to: City Program Clerk The City Program SFU Vancouver 515 West Hastings Street Vancouver BC V6B 5K3 Tel. 778.782.5254 Fax 778.782.5098 Email Can you send your assignment electronically? No. Hardcopies of assignments will only be accepted. Please do not submit assignments by email. Please submit hardcopies to address above. Do you have to complete the assignment? If you are registered in the Urban Design Certificate Program as a cohort then you must complete the assignment in order for the course to count towards the certificate. If you plan, in the future, to enroll in the certificate but have not yet formally been admitted to the program, then it is strongly advised that you complete the assignment as well, as this will allow you to retroactively count the course towards the certificate, once you've been admitted to the program. If you do not complete the assignment by the due date, then you will lose the opportunity to retroactively apply credits to the certificate program. Please refer to policy regarding late assignment submissions below. What if I send my assignment in late? Assignments submitted two weeks late or less will be accepted; however, they are charged a $75 marking fee each. In addition, these assignments are marked on a Pass /Fail basis only. They are not eligible for any other grade. What if I send my assignment in more than two weeks after the due date, what happens then? 11

Assignments will NOT be accepted more than two weeks after the due date. In this case, you are NOT able to count the course towards the certificate and will be required to take another course (and complete the required assignment) in its place. Extenuating circumstances will be taken into consideration. To qualify for AIBC continuing education credits, do you have to complete the assignment? No, you do not have to complete the assignment to receive your AIBC credits. However, if you plan to register for the Urban Design Certificate Program in the future, then it is strongly advised that you complete the assignment now.


Course Evaluation Urban Design: Theory and Practice (Edmonton) May 5-6, 2010 Answer questions using the following scale:

1=Poor 2=Fair 3=Good 4=Very Good 5=Excellent

    

Overall, how would you rate this course? Content (the ideas and concepts presented) Format and organization Course materials or handouts Opportunity for participation

Evaluate the instructor: Knowledge and expertise Presentation and clarity

Michael von Hausen

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Frank Ducote

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Additional comments regarding the instructors: Michael von Hausen:

Frank Ducote:

Additional comments regarding the workshop:

Please turn over…

Comments on the SFU facilities, administrative staff and/or procedures:

How did you hear about this course? Picked Up Brochure

Mailed Brochure

City Prog. Email




Interested in other courses? Yes

 No


Name (optional):

THANK YOU FOR YOUR FEEDBACK! Collection of Personal Information The information on this form is collected under the authority of the University Act (R.S.B.C. 1996, c.468, s. 27(4)(a)). Although these evaluations are completed anonymously, your handwriting may serve to identify you. The information is related directly to and needed by the University to administer and improve Continuing Studies non-credit courses and to manage course instructors. The information will be used to evaluate the course, the success of the program and the instructor's job performance. Please note that the course instructor may access this evaluation form. If you have any questions about the collection and use of this information please contact Gordon Price, Director, The City Program, Simon Fraser University Vancouver, 2300-515 West Hastings Street, Vancouver, BC, V6B 5K3, 778-782-5254.

Urban Design: Theory and Practice  

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