Spring 2015

Semester Start Date: 
Friday, January 2, 2015

CDD Forum Spring 2015: Practicing Perspectives on Urban Design

This forum examined innovations in urban design practice occurring through the work of leading practitioners in the fields of architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning. Featured lectures by major national and global practitioners in urban design. Topics discussed included architectural urbanism, landscape and ecology, arts and culture, urban design regulation and planning agencies, and citywide and regional design.

Muntinlupa Matters: Addressing Informality in Metro Manila

Vulnerabilities to natural disasters have long been a part of Filipino history, shaping society, culture, and the physical environment. However, in 2013 Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), the strongest tropical storm recorded at landfall in the Philippines, cost thousands of lives, displaced millions, and caused large-scale destruction, amplifying the urgent need for environmental and social resilience planning in the region.

Quantitative Reasoning

11.220 Quantitative Reasoning & Statistical Methods for Planners I (2015)

Human Beings are not Statistically Intuitive. People use "narratives" as the primary thinking and communication instruments. More true is this for planners! But combining it with the language of statistics empowers everyone. We empathize dearly with students who find statistics difficult--and this is precisely the reason for a class dedicated to it.

Looking Back: DUSP and New Orleans, 10 Years After Katrina

By the time Katrina was through with New Orleans in August 2005, 80% of the city was flooded, 1800 people had died and more than 217,000 homes had been damaged or destroyed, displacing 30,000 senior residents and 17,000 low-income families. Three-quarters of the population had been evacuated, thousands of buildings were unsafe to occupy and thousands more lay condemned.

Displacement and Return in New Orleans

Starting in 2003—before the hurricane occurred—1,019 low-income parents from New Orleans enrolled in a study of community college students and answered questions about their economic status, social ties, and mental and physical health. Hurricane Katrina disrupted the study in August of 2005, and provided an extremely rare opportunity to study the consequences of a disaster for the lives of vulnerable individuals and their families.

In the News: Digital Matatus in WIRED

Wired Magazine recently profiled MIT's Digital Matatus, a project of DUSP Professor Sarah Williams and the MIT Civic Data Design Lab.  To read the story, see http://www.wired.com/2015/08/nairobi-got-ad-hoc-bus-system-google-maps/ ; to learn more about the project, see http://dusp.mit.edu/cdd/project/digital-matatus and the MIT News.

Wilson W. Wyatt and the Veterans Emergency Housing Program

In 1945, the United States faced a housing crisis: veterans returning from the war faced an acute housing shortage caused by 15 years of stalled housing production through the Great Depression and WWII and exacerbated by the presence of nearly 10M workers who flocked to the cities to ramp up production during the war years.  To address the problem in a comprehensive manner, President Truman used his authority under the Second War Powers Act to establish a new federal position and appoint Wilson W.

DUSP Welcomes Inaugural Class of STL Fellows

This fall,the Samuel Tak Lee MIT Real Estate Entrepreneurship Lab (STL Lab) will welcome 12 masters students to MIT as the inaugural class of STL Fellows.   The group includes:

DUSP Students (MCP Program)

Student Research: Mapping Impact in Boston's Dudley Street Neighborhood

In his MCP thesis, "Mapping Impact: An Analysis of the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative Land Trust," Lee A. Dwyer (MCP 2015) worked in our own backyard -- in Boston's Dudley neighborhood -- to explore and analyze the role of land trusts in affordable housing and community development.

This thesis examines the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative (DSNI) community land trust, which provides long-term affordable housing to low-income families using a resale-restricted model and promotes community control over development.

Spring in Madrid

"Lecturer James Buckley spent the Spring 2015 semester in Madrid on a Fulbright fellowship.  He co-taught a planning studio on Lavapies, a vulnerable mixed-income neighborhood in the city center, and researched the development of Vitoria-Gastiez, a community in the Basque district with a very advanced sustainability agenda."