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  • an old saying goes, that happiness begins at home.

  • So if the projections air right and that by 2050 70% of the world's population will live in cities, we need to think seriously about how we plan the neighborhoods of tomorrow.

  • The good news is that that's not news.

  • Urban planners, mayors, local community groups and more already care about the future of our cities.

  • And if buzzwords are any indication, we also already have a pretty good idea about where we're headed.

  • The future will be walkable, likable and sustainable.

  • We live near jobs, shops and schools where we can live, work and play.

  • And we all want to reduce congestion, enhance safety, promote jobs and increase quality of life.

  • But here's the rub.

  • People don't just walk or bike or feel fulfilled because they live in a lead certified building in fact, quality of life and even more broadly, our happiness is difficult to define and even harder to plan for.

  • Perhaps that's why we often feel like something is missing from our towns and cities.

  • We're made for community, and yet we often can't find it.

  • We yearn to feel valued, understood and connected, and that we often feel the exact opposite.

  • That feeling of connection is essential.

  • Study after study has shown an undeniable link between human well being and the feeling that you're a part of something.

  • Harvard Medical School research has also demonstrated that our relationships and sense of connection are the greatest predictors of mental and physical health.

  • In other words, our quality of life improves most when we feel engaged and empowered.

  • Social connective ity and an ability to play a role in the world around us are essential to feeling happy.

  • So if you're an urban planner concerned about quality of life, that connection between well being an engagement should emphasize the importance of public participation in the planning process.

  • If we want to make better communities, we need communities to tell us what's working and what's not.

  • There's just one problem.

  • Planning's boring.

  • Let's be real.

  • Most of us aren't going to attend a local zoning commission meeting.

  • We probably didn't even know what the meeting was taking place, and so on.

  • Lee, a handful of us showed up voicing are very invested opinions for better or worse, to their credit, planners generally try to seek public input almost every Professional Planning Association meeting has a session on stakeholder engagement and newer public participation strategies like visioning, Happy Hours and urban planning.

  • Charette's are gaining in popularity, but the language of these efforts, even within the very best planning projects, tells us that something's off.

  • For example, the American Planning Association recently named the Plano Tomorrow Plan in Plano, Texas, as the year's best comprehensive plan and by a lot of counts plane or did some cool things, like making the plan video based rather than a giant book.

  • But let's take a look at their public outreach strategy.

  • Plano's success metrics, like all too many plans, focus on what its planners did, not actual participation.

  • So they sent announcements in people's utility bills paid for robocalls, attended the Neighborhood Leadership Council's quarterly breakfast, and they hosted meetings in a box.

  • That's great, but I don't know if that means that Plano collected a diversity of ideas and opinions.

  • Let's be real.

  • Not everyone fills out a survey at a balloon festival.

  • I'm not saying this to pick on play, no, but to illustrate two points first, that getting people to participate in planning is really hard.

  • Second to demonstrate that even one of the best plans in America suffers from an urban planning skills gap.

  • If public participation is essential to quality of life, you'd think that planners would receive heaps of community outreach training.

  • Likewise, they have a really understanding of how to put plans into action to make communities better.

  • Neither is true.

  • Simply put, planners don't receive adequate training in public participation strategies, the political process or communications 101 In fact, a quick review of the nation's best urban planning graduate programs reveals.

  • An almost shocking lack, of course, is devoted to public participation.

  • Student spent plenty of time learning about planning, theory, planning, history, advanced data methodologies and technical skills like geographic information systems mapping.

  • But almost no courses are devoted to communicating with diverse audiences or putting plans into action.

  • I'd hazard to guess that most people who become urban planners do so because they want to make a difference.

  • But for that to become a reality, we need toe overhaul the planning process to truly emphasize public participation, listening, conversing, observing, communicating and relationship building should be an urban planners chief skill set, so why aren't we teaching them how to do those things.

  • Great models for public participation, like that of Envision Utah already exist.

  • Envision Utah, perhaps more than any other planning project has used marketing savvy and values based messaging to inspire participation.

  • Just look at this compared to play.

  • No, I'm sold, aren't you?

  • And that's why 50,000 Utahans participated in the Your Utah Your Future Plan for 2050.

  • The lesson of Envision Utah is all about building buy in.

  • Planners who want to make a difference would do well to think more like grassroots political organizer's building relationships with local businesses, venerated residents, religious organizations, brokers, trust and Foster's collective change.

  • Making effective, clear, resonant messaging is the hallmark of good advertising, and it should be for planning efforts to and say what you will about polling organizations after the most recent US election.

  • But companies like Gallop and Survey USA have effectively measured public sentiment for years.

  • There's no silver bullet for public participation, no singular approach to building better communities, but it bare minimum.

  • It's time to shift our focus from zoning codes and technical skills to just figuring out what people want.

  • Happiness and health aren't engineering problems.

  • They're people problems.

  • When planners put people first, the results speak for themselves.

  • One of the best examples I have for this actually comes from a community that had its independence and self governance taken away.

  • If you're the Oglala Lakota tribe on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, you know a thing or two about the perils of underrepresentation.

  • Today, Pine Ridge is one of the poorest areas in America, as the native tribe struggles to deal with economic hardship, substance abuse under resourced schools and lack of transportation connective ity.

  • And in 18 90 it was the home of the Wounded Knee Massacre, a brief one sided encounter with U.

  • S troops that left at least 150 dead.

  • So it's safe to say that the Ogallala haven't always been the beneficiary of past planning efforts, which is why the work of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corp should inspire us all the more.

  • Instead of resorting to formulate processes, Thunder Valley is tapping into a language and memory to engage the community.

  • This is just one of the ways that they have been able to do that.

  • Rio koalas do the best we can to take care of our own people.

  • This little piece of land we have is our home.

  • We don't want to be anywhere else.

  • This is all we have left.

  • We know it is up to us.

  • Ogallala is to make it happen.

  • This might only work on Pine Ridge, and that's the point.

  • It's authentic and personal.

  • It's Ogallala Thunder Valleys.

  • Ability to tap in the history and heritage is what gives their planners the ability to do what they do.

  • There's a constant Fred of self sufficiency, and that value is why Thunder Valley supports a youth development initiative, construction, labor training and food sovereignty program.

  • They're crowning.

  • Achievement is the development of a new regenerative community Ah, kind of whole new neighborhood that caters to the need of reservation residents.

  • As one Pine Ridge resident put it after attending a Thunder Valley meeting.

  • That was the best meeting I've ever been to in my whole life.

  • Nobody had ever asked me what I want from my community or my life, and that's the key when planners are able to pin down what's in our heart, planning regains the power to improve the places we call home.

  • It's just not likely to happen at a zoning meeting.

  • Quality of life depends on how much we engage in it.

  • I invite you to join me in doing just that.

an old saying goes, that happiness begins at home.

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幸福のために都市をデザインできるのか?| トーマス・マデレキ|TED Institute (Can we design cities for happiness? | Thomas Madrecki | TED Institute)

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    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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