History of Urban Development
The history of the city spans centuries, but one of the key points in the development of the modern city was in part due to the Industrial Revolution. During that time, cities were forming and evolving to help the Industrial Revolution move forward. Cities became centers for industry, as technological and market advances progressed in astonishing ways.
However, with this advancement came a price. The cities during that time frame, and those affected later by its impact, were unsuitable for anything but a poor quality of life. In particular, cities during this time were a sustainable nightmare. Every conceivable knock against the environment was committed by these early cities. If these cities were judged by today’s standards, they would have drastically failed any evaluation.
Evolution of Sustainable Planning
Consequently, many alternate methods of planning were developed – one of the most famous being the suburb. However, the suburb has problems of its own. Most notably, sprawl has contributed to many sustainability issues, such as pollution, transportation, and many others. In response to the many problems of the suburb, alternate forms of sustainable planning have been conceived. Some of these methods of sustainable planning include mixed use, form based codes, and smart growth.
Since then, however, these types of sustainable planning methods aimed at combating sprawl have their own potential problems. Essentially, this is one of the side effects that pervades many solutions. This is overall one of the biggest challenges of sustainability in urban planning. How does one side-step this? Many sustainable solutions, once implemented, stand a high chance of being imperfect solutions to problems. The only way to make sustainable solutions foolproof would be perfect care for negating harmful side effects of these solutions.
Shedding Light on Urban Development Solutions
This spotlight on cause-and-effect is not intended to discourage and succumb to an imperfect world. It’s simply meant to highlight the complexity of any sustainable issue. No solution is simple. As one aims to make a mark in this field, it is of the utmost importance that every individual in the field be aware that their solutions have long term effects, both positive and negative. Only when an individual aims to consider every angle of a solution’s effects, will they be maximizing their successes.
In the end, this issue can be applied to far more than just a niche part of a broader field. This is not a way to discourage, but rather encourage everyone in the sustainability field to think about the long term effects of their methods and actions when trying to achieve sustainability. Only by knowing how to overcome the deficiencies and ending up with only the positive effects will a sustainable plan truly be bulletproof.Feature Image: Modern suburb. Image via conserve-energy-future.com