Versatile Urban Design: China’s Roadblock Toward Energy Sustainability

Studying neighborhoods in Jinan, China, MIT urban studies and planning Professor Dennis Frenchman told MITnews that the country’s biggest challenge is its homogenous urban design.

Frenchman explained in an interview with MITnews how China has tried to reach energy sustainability and its systemic contradictions to that goal:

"The biggest city-planning challenge that China now faces is to encourage a different form of urbanization than the design model currently being built," said Frenchman.

"Right now, policymakers in China tend to think about improving the energy efficiency of development by seeking 'the perfect form.' And they're very oriented around a top-down structure: Tell developers what they need to do."

"Our work has shown that (China's) way of living (tower-in-a-park model) consumes almost twice as much energy as any other form of development, such as, for example, a conventional, mixed-use urban neighborhood on a grid of streets and blocks."

Full Story: 3 Questions: Dennis Frenchman on making cities sustainable

Comments

Prepare for the AICP* Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245

Essential Readings in Urban Planning

Planning on taking the AICP* Exam? Register for Planetizen's AICP * Exam Preparation Course to save $25.

Get the "Green Bible" of educational planning books

Understand the complexities of planning at the local level while preparing for the AICP* exam. Find out why this edition is included in the APA's recommended reading list.
$105

Create Your Own Paper Block City

Urban Fold is an all-inclusive kit that allows anyone to build the city of their dreams with a few simple folds.
$24.95