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Sustainable Urban Design

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Abstract

The role urban design and urban designers can play in helping to deliver high-quality, sustainable built environments is now well established, both in the UK and elsewhere. Previously known as ‘Civic Design’, with the ‘urban’ coming to the fore in the USA during the 1960s, this activity is multidisciplinary in its approach and holistic in its general outlook. Urban design practitioners pride themselves in filling the spatial gaps between the traditional functions of the architect, who usually concentrates on designing an individual building on a single site for a single client, and those of the planner, who works on policy making and delivery for whole neighbourhoods, towns, cities and even regions. Urban designers claim that, unlike their professional colleagues, they are uniquely able to focus on, amongst other things, the quality of the public realm, the street, the square and the spaces between buildings.

Even though urban design is now a recognised profession amongst those responsible for delivering our built environments, there is a tangible lack of confidence amongst those who aim to practise this profession. This manifests itself in an incessant need to define and continually restate the remit of urban design, and the role and function of urban designers. It is also evident in their seemingly endless, but helpful, desire to identify and codify a series of rules and principles for helping to design and create good-quality, sustainable places.

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Correspondence to Lindsay Smales .

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Smales, L., Warhurst, P. (2016). Sustainable Urban Design. In: Dastbaz, M., Strange, I., Selkowitz, S. (eds) Building Sustainable Futures. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-19348-9_10

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-19348-9_10

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  • Online ISBN: 978-3-319-19348-9

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