Instructors: Mansi Shah and Jennifer Pierce (2014)
Course gave a comprehensive overview of spatial design challenges faced by cities today and especially those in developing countries related to the environment. New concepts and planned approaches were explored towards understanding and resolving environmental problems in human settlements. Larger themes were integrated in the same context related to mobility, society, economy and housing.
Each session began with an introductory lecture by us followed by a “cyte visit” which used multi-media to transport the class around the world to a case study on a class topic. Hands on activities, discussions, weekly assignments and readings helped with theoretical and applied knowledge related to the field. Primary topics included: density, sprawl, slums, streets, open spaces, nature in the city, and sustainability. By the end of the course, students were comfortable communicating spatial morphology of cities, and the social and environmental implications of spatial planning.
Each box is a city. The base of the box is the area and height is the density of the city. Students created different combinations to understand the trend of density in Indian cities vis-à-vis other cities in the world. This activity led us to explore many topics such as, 1. What area is to be considered for a city? What is high density? Is high density good? It opened up many avenues of discussion in class.
This exercise investigated the morphological patterns in different cities. Several properties related to a city shape, function, block sizes, streets, built-form were explored and compared in the wide spectrum of plans.
This work is produced by B.plan III year students in the course Spatial planning and Environmental Design (SPED), Batch 2014 | 2015.
The urban fabric has a third dimension which is explored in this exercise where students extruded a block of the city to see a variety of urban forms which are a result of regulations. This opened up the discussion on urban block, shape, size, traditional spatial structure of cities, etc.
Each student was given a role (of a tree, farmer, sun, cow, landfill, etc). They also were given the regular inputs and outputs. (Eg: landfill site , input: land, garbage, other wastes, output: toxic land). Students had to make a chain so that materials flow in a closed loop in a way that waste can be minimized.
Fisheries game is a simulation game where students assume the role of a fisherman. The challenge is how they can harvest sufficient fishes for their family without running out for 10 rounds. It allows students to understand exploitation dynamics that emerge when there is abundant resource (A situation that resembles human exploitation of ecosystem services).