The roads in your city might conform to a grid, or they might divert around natural resources or landmarks. A new tool aims to help you visualize the "hidden logic" behind urban growth.
"It works by using an old geography technique: the 'polar' or circular chart. Boeing's tool calculates what percentage of a city's roads run along each section of a compass, and plots it on a circular bar chart."
Because the majority of streets in Manhattan, for example, align along a grid, its network is primarily encompassed in four long bars radiating out from the center of the circle. A few shorter bars represent the smaller portion of streets that don't line up.
Montgomery notes that a similar concept was created recently by data scientist Seth Kadish, but Boeing's adaptation made the model usable by anyone with knowledge of the programming language Python. Developer Vladimir Agafonkin built on Boeing's work to build a version for web browsers, so that "anyone can use a typical web mapping interface to visit any city or other region in the world and see a polar chart of its street grid."
"'It's a wonderful way to explore how cities are built; understand their hidden patterns and influences,' said Agafonkin. 'You can see where a road network was meticulously planned and where it grew naturally. [You can] see subtle connections like terrain, water bodies and nearby attractions influencing the direction of roads.'"
Indiana Once Again Considering Ban on Dedicated Transit Lanes
The proposed legislation would impact the construction of planned IndyGo Blue Line, the third phase of the city’s bus rapid transit system.
4 Ways to Use AI in Urban Planning and City Design
With the ability to predict trends, engage citizens, enhance resource allocation, and guide decision-making, artificial intelligence has the potential to serve as planners’ very own multi-tool.
LA’s ‘Spongy’ Infrastructure Captured Almost 9 Billion Gallons of Water
The city is turning away from stormwater management practices that shuttle water to the ocean, building infrastructure that collects and directs it underground instead.
An Affordable Housing Model for Indigenous Americans
Indigenous people make up a disproportionately high percentage of the unhoused population, but many programs designed to assist them don’t reach those most in need.
Oregon Bill Would Ban E-Bikes for Riders Under 16
State lawmakers seek to change Oregon e-bike laws following the death of a 15-year old last summer.
Northeastern Waterways More Polluted After Wet Year
Intense rains washed more runoff into local bodies of water, while warmer temperatures contributed to the growth of an invasive bloom.
Tufts University Department of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning
City of Grand Forks, North Dakota
HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research
City of Birmingham, Alabama
City of Laramie, Wyoming
Colorado Department of Local Affairs
This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.