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Urban Analysis: A Closer Look at the Main Concepts

Urban Analysis: A Closer Look at the Main Concepts

What does it take to have a good city? The answer is good planning and architectural design work, which have to start with urban analysis.

September 20, 2021

What does it take to have a good city? The answer is good planning and architectural design work, which have to start with urban analysis. With good urban assessment, planners can ensure that all facilities, from urban parks to the transport networks, cater to current populations and further need for growth. So, it is correct to say that urban analysis is one of the most important things for urban development. 

This post takes a closer look at urban analysis to answer two main questions, “What is it?” and “What are the main concepts?” 

What is Urban Analysis? 

Urban analysis is one of the most important components in urban planning, and it focuses on the organization and differentiation of social, demographics, and economic processes that help to shape cities. As the name urban analysis suggests, it targets identifying the main challenges and issues that face cities across the globe, such as the following: 

  • Neighborhood development problems.
  • Crime in cities. 
  • Social justice. 
  • Poor waste management. 
  • Healthcare services accessibility. 

As you can see, urban analysis entails so much, which requires inherent conceptualization and future considerations. To achieve all the above, you need to be very observant, collaborate with other stakeholders, and use the right software, such as Sketchup and CityCAD. 

Importance of Urban Analysis 

According to the report of the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Global Sustainability, the global agenda is to eradicate poverty, address inequality, and make growth inclusive in a sustainable way. To achieve this, the UN targets to ensure that businesses, governments, institutions, and individuals focus on sustainability. For example, the UN looks forward to ensuring that everyone has access to safe and affordable housing by 2030. Like the UN, the World Bank targets to strengthen efforts to protect and safeguard the globe’s natural heritage. Urban analysis is one of the best methods that can help to achieve these goals. Other advantages that come with urban analysis include: 

  • Makes it easy to understand the evolution and implications of urban forms. This understanding is very crucial for decision-making on infrastructural projects. 
  • Makes it easier for data collection on urban development. 
  • Simplifies the process of comparing trends in urbanization trends between countries and cities. 
  • Provides for better spatial targeting of the vulnerable for the poor. 

The Main Concepts in Urban Analysis 

When carrying out urban analysis and planning, planner must remain objective of making the area a better place. Therefore, here are the main concepts that guide the analysis and crafting the solutions to the identified issues: 

  1. Urban economic activities: Here, your target is to understand what people in the city do. For example, is the main economic activity market operation involving selling fresh produce, real estate-related services, high-end hotels, or industrial activities? The data you get on can help to craft the right drainage, parks, and road networks. 
  2. The urban population: When doing an urban analysis, the concept of population is very important. Remember that you need to look at it from the historical, present, and future viewpoints in order to determine the best solution. If a town X had 200,000 people in 2015 and 600,000 in 2020, it is crucial to think of how to cater for future growth. 
  3. The spatial interactions: The interaction in a city is another concept that helps to define how different components work together. The aim is to establish whether the current road networks, footpaths, and interlinks in a city are adequate.

As an urban planner, it is crucial to ensure that your analysis is conclusive and factors all items that can help to make the city more sustainable, aesthetically appealing, and functional. Remember to include all the stakeholders in the process, including real estate developers, and focus years into the future. 

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