An unidentified man flies a kite amid the newly redeveloped waterfront of Tianjin, one of five megacities under direct control of China’s central government. Nearly 300 Fortune 500 companies have branch offices in Tianjin’s Binhai New Area, on the Bohai Sea, site of perhaps China’s most ambitious eco-city project. (Photo by M. Burnham)
Michael Burnham - November 1, 2011
In the summer of 2011, while working at CAUPD's Beijing headquarters, I helped develop a master plan for Yuhuan County, Zhejiang Province's easternmost municipality, about 300 kilometers south of Shanghai. My team and I spent nine days in Yuhuan, toured the Singapore-sized county, and met with local government officials. This paper, whose intended audience is urban planners and other sustainable development practitioners working in China, uses Yuhuan to explore the broader planning and policy challenges and opportunities China faces as it urbanizes. More specifically, this paper proposes how and why Yuhuan — and, presumably, other Chinese cities — should integrate sustainable development best practices from some of the world's best-planned “eco-cities.”
Presentations & Lectures
Xinyang Li, with the China Academy of Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) in Shanghai, shared information on the urbanization boom in China. Xinyang presented on the history of urbanization and the programs that helped to start the largest urbanization effort that the planet has ever seen. Through the lens of national, provincial and local governments, Xinyang looks at how urbanization has shaped the Yangtze River delta in a variety of ways.
Bin He, with the China Academy of Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) in Shenzhen, presented on four coastal cities and their varying development patterns. Bin examines the reasons why each city took a different development course, and how that impact carried over to present day conditions. Bin also offers context surrounding the role of planners in China and how they interact with local and national politicians.
Pam Phan spent the summer with the China Academy of Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) in Shenzhen. During her time there as an intern, she was able to learn about public participation processes in Shenzhen and how that related to the quality of life study that CAUPD Shenzehn was undergoing. Pam also explores the notion of community and how the areas in and around Shenzhen are forming communities in light of recent urbanization trends.
Jeremy Dalton worked with the Urban Planning and Design Institute in Shenzhen (UPDIS) during the summer of 2013. In his presentation, he explores the work he did in the Pearl River Delta area, including Shenzhen and Guangzhou. Jeremy also managed to visit a tulou (a communal residence that's typically circular in shape) in Futian, and gives his perspective on life in urban China.
Rebecca Hamilton spent the summer with the China Academy of Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) in Beijing, working with the countryside planning department. Rebecca shares thoughts on her work in that department, including a trip to Tianjin to discover the Chinese mass transit and railway system. She also offers a glimpse into the physical changes that Beijing is undergoing, and what life was like for an American intern in Beijing.
JP McNeil shares reflections on his work with the China Academy of Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) in Shenzhen. JP's work revolved around quality of life study that CAUPD was implementing, which was namely focused on the urban villages in Shenzhen. JP also shares insight into his experience cycling through Shenzhen and how that related to the concept of personal space in a dense, urban area.
Szilvia Hosser-Cox offers insight into her time in China this past summer. Szilvia was with the Urban Planning and Design Institute in Shenzhen for the summer, and worked on numerous projects such as the design of a railway station in Nanning and underground developments near Wenzhou. She also shared details about her personal travels throughout China and shared reflections on China's green space development.
Anna Wendt spent the summer working with the China Academy of Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) in Beijing. Anna's work was acutally focused on the city of Dalian, a port town in northeastern China. Dalian is one of the fastest growing Chinese cities, and CAUPD is working to develop a 25sq/km site just outside of Dalian's urban core. Anna worked on eco-infrastructure projects and underground/skyway system development projects. She also offers reflections on the politics of sharing "lessons learned" across national and cultural borders.