31 Mart 2008 Pazartesi

5th week Submission

CITYSHAPE – Communicating and Evaluating Community Design

Sherwin Greene

The article presents a framework or taxanomy for community planners and designers to use to help citizens understand and evaluate community dessigns ( author prefers using this term because it conveys a less restrictive sense of geographic scale than the term “urban design”). The taxanomy is more than a theoretical exercise, it is designed as a tool for planning practitioners and their constituencies to apply to design problems in their communities.

For designing a framework for communicating and evaluating community design issues, Grene describes four basic principles: function, order, identity and appeal. These principles, Greene suggests are a synthesis of multiple source and represent attributes that are significant enough to have universal application to all environments. First of all he describes elements of the environment under two groups natural and built as masses, spaces and paths. Then he defines aesthetic requirements according to users needs in terms of physical, psychology and sociology. Because Greene describes community design as a visual experience. While he describing these principles of community design, he also defines taxanomy that defines these principles along with explanatory qualities and guidelines.

Function is the ability of an environment to satisfy the needs of all its users.
Order means the clarity of the environment from the users viewpoint
Identity is the ability of the environment to connote special visual images
Appeal is the ability of the environment to offer pleasure to its users.

To supply easy perception in terms of citizens he firtly defines community design then communication and at the end evaluation. The community design evaluation guide can be used to evaluate proposals or to make assestments of existing developments. Participants in this assessment can include both professionals and nonprofessionals. Repeated assessments of existing environments, both at night and during the day, can evoke different reactions that are useful starting points for discussion. A five-point rating scale allows for comparisons between participants observations in the assessment process. The five point check off rating system allows the various evaluations to be easily organized and compared. Evaluators first note basic data about project and then record their first imprssions. The next step is to generate a carefully considered rating of the project in terms of each of the four community design principles.

As a conclusion, Greene tries to make a universal language about community design by presenting community design principles. Because complex, dynamic process of community design involves many different voices speaking in seemingly different languages. The taxanomy presented here attempts to resolve the confusion.

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