Nov 28, 2011

Caught in the process: Urban and Regional Planning process requires a fresh approach

By - Anoop Jha

Flawed bottom-up process in Urban and Regional Planning

Too much focus on  process and micro management poses many dangers in planning process and leads to content deficit, blurred vision and ignorance to outcome.

Scale of Urban and regional planning demands a macro level approach to begin with. It requires a top down approach which means, vision of the planning assignment should be stated and crystal  clear and outcome after the whole gimmick of  planning process should be defined, planners need to start from there backwards up to the conceptualizing the project and steps to be taken.

whole process should be oriented towards achieving the goal. but most of the corporations, consultants, planners, governing authorities miss this vital point. for example in a normal routine planning process, at preliminary stages of projects only few senior people are involved but as the project moves towards finalization more and more people chip in and give comments which lead to major re-adjustments in the project at the later stage of project which is not good for any projects health, idea is to urge as many senior planners, authorities and stakeholders in the beginning of the project life cycle for the process of review and feedback. Another example of wastage of time in the process is that some of  the corporate bodies often miss the objective of the project, because they are so much caught n the process of corporatisation, making presentation with fancy jargon words, decorating charts, quoting someone else's statistical inferences etc. Their process is bottom up kind, they are least concerned about the future outcome of the project. they want to en-cash the opportunity of present ignoring the future.

Focus of urban and regional planning should be on analytical inferences of gathered data in terms of trends, regional context, indexing of available social and physical infrastructure, resource mobilization strategies, preparing development matrix and and strategic proposal rather than micro managing the process.

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