Site Representation and Research

Developing and communicating practical ideas about places begins with identification of crucial entities and relationships that affect some aspect of the functioning or evaluation of the place. Such conceptual models may be instantiated through structured observations organized as data models. A tremendous amount of such data regarding the physical, cultural and regulatory structure of places are produced as a byproduct of government administration and research. GD2201 cultivates a perspective on information and software in service to strategic resource development, collaboration, and responsible scholarship. Beginning with a pre-semester workshop in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), students develop a structured collection of data and documentation that supports several maps and discussions of topography, land use, zoning and demographics satisfying the first exercise. The second exercise continues to develop the information framework, employing desktop publishing tools to maps to communicate concise conceptual models and graphical arguments. The third exercise employs GIS to instantiate a model of development loads and potential of an area in terms of formal metrics of land use regulation. The GIS model serves as a laboratory for constructing and evaluating proposals to reconfigure a district of the city to meet specific planning aims. The final exercise fleshes out the design proposal with three dimensional models of the studio project in context. These models are presented as two-dimensional renderings, videos and interactive three-dimensional models. Each exercise demonstrates proper acknowledgement of sources and includes critical discussion of data and technique. Coordination of site and exercises with the first year core urban planning studio, this course is designed especially for first year MUP candidates.