Master of Urban & Regional Planning
Urban and Regional Planning
Dr. Meghan Gough
Dr. Ivan Suen
Dr. Rodney Dyer
ARE POST-INDUSTRIAL CITIES USING BIOPHILIC URBANISM TO MERGE NATURE AND THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT? A PLAN EVALUATION OF FOUR U.S. LEGACY CITIES
By Andrea (Andi) Ames Kerley, Master in Urban and Regional Planning
A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Urban and Regional Planning, at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Virginia Commonwealth University, 2020.
Major Director: Megan Z. Gough, Associate Professor, L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs,
Urban and Regional Studies and Planning
The re-imaging of U.S. post-industrial cities from desolate, impoverished, and polluted areas to unique, equitable, and environmentally aware cities of the future is necessary to re-establish these communities as vibrant places for people to live and visit with the utmost quality of life. Research shows that as economies in cities improve, people living in these places expect better quality living conditions with aesthetically pleasing recreational spaces (Newman, 2014). Also, the increasing awareness of environmental and social resilience has resulted in the need to rethink the methods of incorporating green spaces into urban areas (Beatley and Newman, 2013). As these cities in the U.S. implement green projects and strategies, they are realizing that they must adapt and evolve; not just create a new place (Moulton, 2019). The principles of biophilic design, when used in conjunction with localities’ green infrastructure and sustainability plans, are the most efficient pathway to meet these needs of de-industrialized cities. Using a rubric developed for this research, an evaluation of selected former industrial U.S. cities’ planning strategies and initiatives will determine which methods best merge biophilic urbanism into post-industrial cities.
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