Making Plans: How to Engage with Landscape, Design, and the Urban Environment
"Community and regional planning involve thinking ahead and formally envisioning the future for ourselves and others," according to Frederick R. Steiner. "Improved plans can lead to healthier, safer, and more beautiful places to live for us and other species. We can also plan for places that are more just and more profitable. Plans can help us not only to sustain what we value but also to transcend sustainability by creating truly regenerative communities, that is, places with the capacity to restore, renew, and revitalize their own sources of energy and materials."
In Making Plans, Steiner offers a primer on the planning process through a lively, firsthand account of developing plans for the city of Austin and the University of Texas campus. As dean of the UT School of Architecture, Steiner served on planning committees that addressed the future growth of the city and the university, growth that inevitably overlapped because of UT's central location in Austin. As he walks readers through the planning processes, Steiner illustrates how large-scale planning requires setting goals and objectives, reading landscapes, determining best uses, designing options, selecting courses for moving forward, taking actions, and adjusting to changes. He also demonstrates that planning is an inherently political, sometimes messy, act, requiring the intelligence and ownership of the affected communities. Both wise and frank, Making Plans is an important philosophical and practical statement on planning by a leader in the field.