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Sustainable Planning: The Case of Canadian Cities – Annotated Bibliography
Since the middle of the 1980s, sustainability has become one of the central measures of effective urban planning. The goal of sustainable development is to enhance the quality of life in cities. This annotated bibliography includes scholarly and peer-reviewed resources that discuss the topic of sustainable planning in relation to Canadian cities.
De Sousa, Christopher A. “Turning Brownfields into Green Space in the City of Toronto.”
Landscape and Urban Planning, 62(2003): 181-98. Print.
Since the middle of the 1980s, urban developers in Canada and the United States have become increasingly susceptible to the issues of sustainable growth in urban territories. Converting brownfields into green areas has become one of the top sustainable planning priorities. Toronto, Canada has been one of the most proactive cities in converting brownfield into green spaces. In this article, the researcher examines the processes and problems involved in converting contaminated brownfield sites into urban green spaces. The article includes a brief discussion of the benefits offered by greening and the types of sustainable planning procedures involved in these projects. The goal of the study is to show how converting brownfields into green spaces can speed up the revitalization of cities in Canada. The researcher concludes that the greening experiences of Toronto obviate the value of the brownfield-into-green projects for sustainable planning, through improved soil quality, enhanced recreational opportunities, and sustainable revitalization of urban neighborhoods. The value of the article in that it justifies the importance of sustainable planning through the practical experiences of Toronto, Canada and justifies the need for further analysis of the similar experiences in other Canadian cities.
Grant, Jill. “Mixed Use in Theory and Practice: Canadian Experience with Implementing a
Planning Principle.” Journal of the American Planning Association, 68(2002): 71-84. Print.
For many years, mixed use has been the foundational principle of urban planning in Canada. Mixed use has proved to be the most popular means of planning in Canadian cities. Mixed use has the potential to create urban environments that are active 24 hours a day, thus raising the efficiency of urban infrastructures, increasing affordability of housing, mixing commercial and housing options, and alleviating the burden of environmental difficulties that result from excessive automobile use. In this article, the author describes Toronto’s and other Canadian cities’ experience with mixed use planning, as well as its implications for sustainable planning. The point the author makes is that, despite the benefits offered by mixed use, in Canadian cities mixed use has led to the subsequent segregation of urban territories by class. The article expands the current understanding of sustainable planning practices, points to their weaknesses and deficiencies, and calls for the creation of new urban planning methodologies.
Newman, Peter W.G. “Sustainability and Cities: Extending the Metabolism Model.”
Landscape and Urban Planning, 44(1999): 219-26. Print.
The concept of metabolism is associated with the meaning of livability in urban planning. In present day urban environments, the city as an ecosystem emerges as a new framework for urban planning. The goal of the article is to show how a metabolism model of urbanization developed for Australian cities can give an impetus to sustainable planning in cities all over the world. The author describes the ways in which the discussed model can be applied in cities. The results of the study show that the extended metabolism model can be used at different levels of sustainable urban planning, to reduce the metabolic flows in cities and improve their human livability. The point the author makes is clear: many cities work to create a sustainable planning image, but without a full assessment of their endeavors they will never be able to address the basics of urban sustainability. The article suggests possible ways to improve the quality of sustainable planning in Canadian cities and assess their efficiency and implications for urban growth.
Pivo, Gary. “Toward Sustainable Urbanization on Mainstreet Cascadia.” Cities, 13.5(1996): 339-54. Print.
Mainstreet Cascadia is an urban development band that stretches from Vancouver, Canada to Eugene, Oregon, U.S. The rapid pace of urbanization in these territories has been an issue of the major environmental concern. In this article the meanings of urbanization, urban growth and its environmental costs in Mainstreet Cascadia are described. The most important is the description of the urban planning response, which is based on the six fundamental principles: compactness, completeness, conservation, comfort, coordination, and collaboration. The author assumes that these principles can restrain the negative consequences of urbanization in Mainstreet Cascadia and promote the value of sustainable planning procedures. The point of the article is that sustainable planning should become the basis for the rapid evolution of urbanization in Canada, but the principles discussed in the article require further analysis. The article makes it easier to understand the principles on which sustainable planning in Canada is built but warrants further investigation of their applicability in the context of Canada’s urban growth.
Sahely, Halla R., Christopher A. Kennedy and Barry J. Adams. “Developing Sustainability
Criteria for Urban Infrastructure Systems.” Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering, 32(2005): 72-85. Print.
The growing importance of sustainable planning necessitates the development of new urban infrastructures, with engineering systems designed to meet the most complex socioeconomic and environmental considerations. The goal of this study is to develop a system of quantitative frameworks to be used in the assessment of infrastructure sustainability and its relation to investment planning, environmental factors, and service provision. The researchers discuss the meaning of sustainability and its measurability in the context of urban planning, leading to the development of a sustainable infrastructure framework that can be used to measure the progress of sustainable planning. As an example, the researchers use the City of Toronto and its urban water system. The main indicators used to measure the system’s sustainability include economic, environmental and engineering ones. The authors assert that the proposed system can provide a glimpse into the quality of the existing urban infrastructures and the degree to which they are sustainable. The data provided in the study can be used as a roadmap for further quality assessments.