Wednesday, May 03, 2006

I hate planning

I hate planning. Not planning your activities for the day, I mean urban planning. I'm taking two classes related to planning this quarter and I’m so tired of it. Planning is all about rules, money, and politics. In the US it’s about making our cities comfortable for people zooming around in their cars talking on their cell phone and eating McDonalds. It’s also about making lots of money for developers.

People who work as planners are really pretty powerless to affect change. Planners employed by local governments are essentially working for the developers. Developers finance the campaigns of local city council members or county commissioners. Planners can't propose anything too innovative for fear of upsetting someone. Outdated zoning regulations and ideas about what makes a city an economic success further push conservative plans.

I'm so tired of hearing about how we have to provide space for everyone to drive around (one person per car). So to counteract this overload here are a couple of links to projects that resist the dominance of the auto in our public spaces...

"(P) LOT by Michael Rakowitz

PARK(ing) by rebar
Isn't that fabulous?

1 comment:

Miguel Drummond de Castro said...

Planning is leaving no chance to chance, and the only conceivable working plan is the one who can easily be abandoned and have another, unexpected plan, in lieu.
Towns surely need disorganizers, disrupters, and huge inputs of poetic chaos - otherwise they'll be inscribed in the gaussian and not so gaussian curves of predicatble, always safe every day events.
Planning on other hand is ritual, and both ritual and planning are for neurotics, especiallly the stiff practices of the planned.
Planned towns, by people who never actually walk or scarcely walk are simultaneously comic and hideous. Most towns are actually hideous and sick - they host parkings, and that postmodernist sick machines : cars. Noisy, with bad smells and orderly arranging itselves under the wings of the Collective Insect.
So when plannersr rule the town better find out another town who does not want to be developed and modernised.
As we have seen in the last 30 years modernization, improvement, development, are mafiosi passwords who end up in pauperization, sickness and generalized ugliness. Most new houses and quarters are sick, though they may be redeemable as said Hundertwasser, the austrian painter who asked for the emrgence of architecture doctors