It may sound like a scary film title, but its importance is great and immediate. A major national, and international, response to the so-called ‘global financial crisis’ is to throw very large sums of money at projects with the aim of stimulating the economy. This presents a major opportunity for urban design – and a major challenge.
Some politicians and bureaucrats just want to see the money spent as quickly as possible, and are prepared to sweep aside any impediments – including normal planning and design considerations. Others are more insightful and creative, and understand that, if sound environment, planning and design principles are not part of the speeded up reality, then the mistakes may become obvious very quickly, and bring both a public and political backlash. We are in a high risk environment which demands effective risk management as well as speed.
Submit your ideas now
With the common understanding that urban design is as much about functionality (ie how a place works) as about aesthetics, this edition of Urban Design Forum includes a number of relevant articles. Given that this is a live and urgent challenge, readers are invited to submit their ideas about how best urban design can interact with the’ GFC’ and the ‘Stimulus’. Send contributions, maximum 400 words, and a good pic or two, to [email protected] by 1 July for publishing consideration in the next edition.