Planning & Design


Four Ways Toronto’s Planning Has Stayed ahead of Unprecedented Growth

Speaking at ULI Toronto’s Electric Cities Symposium, Jennifer Keesmaat, Toronto’s chief city planner since 2012, said, “We have a running joke in the city planning department that we’re waiting for the lull.” With the unprecedented level of growth the city has seen in the last five years, the pace of development continues to ratchet up, creating both new opportunities and challenges for Canada’s largest city.

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Embracing Smarter Cities in India and South Korea

Technological innovations are affecting nearly every facet of how societies function, but it is the corresponding evolution of human behavior—not the technology itself—that is driving how the next generation of cities around the globe is being built. That was the general feeling of a panel of large-scale developers—veritable city builders—assembled at the World Real Estate Forum by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Real Estate.

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@Architectural Services Department, Hong Kong S.A.R. The project generates a variety of gathering places—from public to private, from open space to semiopen space and enclosed areas—as an interpretation of the traditional pavilions in a Chinese garden.

Global Awards for Excellence: Hong Kong East Community Green Station

Instead of a being a traditional garbage-collection point, Hong Kong East Community Green Station is designed to be an asset to the local area with the inclusion of an education center, a work area for handling recyclables, an office, ancillary facilities, and a landscape area.

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BP Gets Resilient in Houston

It was not just Hurricane Katrina that convinced BP to build Helios Plaza, its new mission critical–type facility in Houston, with a strong resilience program. It was also the mundane reality that flood-prone Buffalo Bayou is only blocks away from its campus and that the electricity grid in Texas is painfully challenged.

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Recent Articles

  • The City with (Almost) No Limits

    August 30, 2017

    As the only major U.S. city without formal zoning, Houston has a reputation as a freewheeling place where anything goes. But in truth, a complex patchwork of public and private regulation has evolved to impose order.

  • Transitioning Building Design to a Future of Compact, Driverless Cars

    August 21, 2017

    As soon as 2030, the trend toward fewer and smaller cars will mean a reduced need for wide roads and parking, reshaping cities and how people interact. Experts explored the implications at a recent interdisciplinary parking symposium in Arlington, Texas, co-sponsored by ULI North Texas.

  • Increasing the Walkable Properties and Values around New York City

    August 14, 2017

    At its core, New York City is one of the most walkable places on Earth. But a recent analysis showed the vast majority of the New York metro area is not very walkable—even compared with other U.S. cities, like Boston; Washington, D.C.; or even newer cities like Atlanta.

  • Design Convergence: The Built Environment Reflects the Work/Life Blur

    July 31, 2017

    With portable electronic devices allowing people to work from anywhere and at any time, the lines dividing office, hospitality, and home design are blurring.

  • Video: Timelapse of National Building Museum’s “Hive” Installation

    July 18, 2017

    The National Building Museum’s latest Summer Block Party installation – “Hive” – in Washington, D.C., is now open to the public. Designed by Studio Gang, an American architecture and urban design practice with offices in Chicago and New York, Hive is built entirely of more than 2,700 wound paper tubes featuring a reflective silver exterior and a vivid magenta interior, and reaches a height of 60 feet.

  • Japan’s Kashiwa-No-Ha Smart City

    July 17, 2017

    Kashiwa City, with a land area of 115 square kilometers (44 sq mi) and a population of just over 400,000, is in Chiba Prefecture, northeast of Tokyo in Japan’s Kanto region. Though it is home to companies in food processing and other industries, as well as a professional soccer team, it is now best known as the home of Kashiwa-no-ha Smart City.

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