Leaders of cities can use urban planning to help them achieve sustainable development. Planning is a way to make a difference. It helps to balance growth and the protection of the environment. Urban planning helps to distribute economic development in a territory in order to achieve social objectives.
Urban planning is a framework for leaders to transform vision into action, using space as a key resource and engaging stakeholders. Planning can be a powerful tool for city leaders to bring about positive changes.
Framework for growth
A vision is a key to thriving cities. They follow through with a framework that allows them to grow in an orderly way. Frameworks are not about central command and control, but rather a way to anticipate and coordinate efforts and create a collective vision.
A number of cities have made significant efforts to improve livability, equity and prosperity. These transformational effects are not the result of spontaneously but of planning.
A well-planned city is one that has been planned.
We can be more prepared for tomorrow by anticipating the future. Leaders in cities can see the opportunities and manage risk from a higher vantage point by staying ahead of problems. They will be able to make connections between their long-term visions and their short-term actions if they have access to accurate information. Cities that do not actively plan for the future of their city will be likely to fall behind.
Planning increases impact
To deliver improvements, local leaders are elected and appointed. It is unlikely that all the desired improvements will be made at once, given the scale of the problems cities face. Priority projects that align with the vision are key to building momentum in cities. Planning helps identify pressing issues and resources and ensures that initiatives don’t duplicate or go in different directions.
It is important to have a suitable urban form
Urban dwellers are concerned about safety, housing, accessibility, and employment. These issues are closely linked to urban form. It is possible to deliver quality life at a reasonable price by implementing the right policies regarding density, land use and public space. A better city can be achieved by designing a spatial layout that addresses the concerns of citizens.
Urban planning positively influences the urban economy
Local leaders must ensure that there are enough jobs in their city. With the goal of generating economic activity, cities compete for investment. Urban planning coordinates the geographic location and distribution of economic activity. It facilitates value capture through public investment and transforms rural land into urban.
Cities can build lasting relationships with each other through a collectively owned plan
Leaders in cities who see the potential of urbanization should be able to bring all their resources to help it happen. Local leaders can use a collectively-held framework to mobilize partners, mobilize departments and reach citizens to realize the vision.
Cities can scale up by having a wider territorial view
Cities don’t operate in isolation. Their footprint is linked to the surrounding area with which they share resources, opportunities. Cities that work together to plan can gain a competitive advantage over cities that only look within their municipal boundaries. This would not only improve their spatial efficiency but also allow them to leverage economies of scale to increase their negotiation power.
Continuity is a sign of credibility
Cities that have succeeded have been able to maintain continuity through political cycles and realized that a solid road map was more credible. Predictable conditions are a benefit to investors, which is a long-term endeavour. Spatial planning can reduce uncertainty and contribute to transparent opportunities for an engaged society.
Anticipating problems is better than responding to them.
If local leaders move away from laissez-faire, they have the potential to drive constructive change. Cities that plan on a sufficient scale will be able to anticipate rather than react and thus be able to tackle the root cause of the problem. Unplanned spatial patterns can be inefficient and costly to maintain.
Frameworks provide consistency for messages
Communication is an important asset for cities. However, empty messages or contradictory messages can undermine the ability to connect and communicate the city’s strengths. Support and momentum are enhanced when the local leader is able to demonstrate substantial, even incremental, progress consistent with the collective vision.