Press "Enter" to skip to content

The Effect Pivoting Placemaking Approaches Have on Public Policy and Urbanization

Placemaking as an industry is continuously evolving, including the way people are choosing to live and work in a post-pandemic world. The rise of remote work has led to a restructuring in office and home life, and developers have had to transform the way they create the built environment to accommodate this radical transformation.

More and more, developers and city planners are using digital means to create more human-centered cities. AI and machine learning are rapidly accelerating our rate of understanding of communities and providing global insight that can transform the way communities prosper in the future. 

Steven Cornwell, global director of ERA-co, is an expert in placemaking from the ground up. He also recognizes the importance of shifting with changing times and how placemaking will affect public policy and urbanization.

“Cities are grappling with a climate emergency, attention capitalism is shifting generational ideals and culture, the global health crisis has radically transformed how we live, and uncertain economic futures feel forever upon us,” says Cornwell. “These very real challenges form part of our lens as we expand the discipline of placemaking to tackle the future.”

The evolution of placemaking

Within community building and development, the term “placemaking” has been a standard since the 1960s, when sociologist William H. Whyte brought forth his Street Life Project. This project, centered around New York City, described the very tenants of placemaking: walkable and sittable spaces, plazas, and social spaces where people could build community interaction and engagement with their city and one another.

Placemaking has remained an important factor in city development, and has evolved over time as issues such as climate change and our economic future greatly influence urban development. 

ERA-co is focused on the advancement of cities and the communities that inhabit them. Their strategic consulting model and master planning approach is underpinned by a unique placemaking framework designed to optimize complex city-scale ecosystems. Through data science, research, insight, and the team’s collective years in urban planning, ERA-co has been instrumental in the development of a new modern form of smart cities. 

The importance of placemaking today 

Today, public policy is finally considering equity, safety, and climate wellness in a very real way. ERA-co continues to redefine what place means, leading clients into a new “era” of placemaking where experience trumps buildings.

Today’s placemaking approach has taken the bedrock of the theory developed by pioneers of place in the 1960s and modernized it, turning it into a concept that uses evidence-based tools to mine data and futureproof place design. They have set themselves apart by developing a rich understanding of the human dimensions of place and how this understanding shapes the built environment.  

“We create uncommon collaborations to ensure we provide a unique lens to every place project,” explains Cornwell. “The best outcomes happen when collaborative teams transcend architecture to create a rich and layered ecosystem that works for users and owners alike”.

A company like ERA-co is an outlier in all the best ways regarding consultancy, due to its unique approach that weaves traditional placemaking with modern urbanization approaches. “It is rare to have a company capable of leading the entire process from strategy to execution,” says Cornwell. “Partnering with ERA-co in the vision-setting of place is an important first step, but it’s the stewardship of that vision throughout every facet of the project, bringing purpose, meaning, and cultural dimension to place.

Advancing humanity

By 2050, roughly 2.5 billion more people will be city dwellers, making the ideas and motivation behind placemaking even more important, as the biggest challenges in the 21st century are yet to come. With rapid advancements in technology giving freedom to remote work we have never had more choice in deciding where to live and work. The bench has been raised high, and lazy development will lose in the battle for community attention.

ERA-co is well positioned to meet today’s place challenges. As Cornwell told NY Weekly, “Great placemaking has the transformative power to advance humanity. In today’s world, it’s more important than ever that we explore the full potential placemaking has to offer.”

Please follow and like us:

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *