Over half a century of planning.
I was in London, in England of course, where I worked as a city planner and urban designer from 1957 to 1963 and developed my PhD. dissertation during that time on the development of new towns.
The new towns were to be part of our plan to control the growth of London, which was first aimed at decreasing the population size of an area called Greater London, encircled by a three-mile green strip called the Green Belt. London was no longer to develop beyond this belt.
All new development was to take place primarily in planned new towns or in the planned expansion of existing towns, at least 25-miles out, beyond the Green Belt. This plan was to prevent the need to go too high with the population density of the city and eventually to be accessed by fast rail.
There is much to say about this enterprise to those who are interested, as we actually fulfilled and invented new elements of this overall plan. This guy, born in Omaha, Nebraska was to take part in the growth plan for one of the most important cities in the world.
My nephew, in San Diego who is at least one of the regular readers of my postings, after reading my previous writing on population and the growth of Asian cities, sent me an e-mail copy of a recent article.
This was about a Japanese professor in Tokyo, Professor Takayoski Igarashi who two days before Japan suffered the earth quake and its first effects was appointed cabinet adviser by Prime Minister Naoto Kan on population redistribution and economic planning.
I must thank Guy, my nephew for taking the time to make the article available to me. What was new a half century ago has become new again in the thoughts of men.
Locally my planning concern for Shorewood is its physical density, especially in those areas where it's being increased. We are adding more population to already too much impervious coverage. What will its increase do for sewer overflow.
But international planning is of course more interesting and according to Igarashi the overflow is more than the sewers but the population growth of big cities, especially in Tokyo.
According to Bloomberg News, “Igarashi was in the cabinet office when the quake hit. Stranded with no train service, he slept in a chair before going home the next day.”
Igarashi points to the high population areas all over the world and to those of the U.S .including L.A. and the Chicago area, an area not far from us and says, “the lesson we need to take away from this disaster is that we have to restructure Japan as an entire nation.”
Great thinking. Here in the U.S., we can't even get plans for a fast rail to go forward.