10 November 2009

How do we create PLACE and foster SUSTAINABLE chage?

I. Mission Statement
We need to create value of a place in terms of its physical, social, and economical value. We must be engaged in what place really is? What can we do to address and accomplish creating physical, social, and economical value to place.

II. What is Place?

A) Major themes/Ideas of the Council: • Creating a sense of place through connectivity and culture. Connect to places without relying on the car. Change our values! • Think of place in terms of a social, physical, and economical model. Socially, connectivity and culture. Having a clean and safe space. Physical, create a space that is aesthetic and green with good energy. • Push for public transit; change the idea and infrastructure of suburban sprawl.

B) “Culture of Change” • Bring back the edge to Southern California. Create demand. Tackle what is going to create demand. Bring California to the forefront. • People not place anymore. Place is about people and how people connect to place not vice versa. Connectivity to the existing sprawl. • We must plan for the future, change the Southern California mindset • We are having massive cultural shift, our mindsets are changing in terms of our habits. I.e., having a lot of cars on the driveway isn’t important anymore. • Moreover, create a partnership with the government, people, and community • We are in a generational SHIFT which will facilitate change • We need to tap into this new generation, work with the society we have now to change this suburban mindset from post WWII into a modern “metrosuburbian” place • We must identify what is important for people; it is vital to address these components. What do communities want?

The slowing of construction in the USA has created a once-in-a-generation opportunity for driving significant, positive environmental change. Although I hesitate to even use the word because it has so little currency in the USA, an opening exists for a nation-wide consideration of sustainable development.

C) What Can We Do to Remedy Sprawl in Southern California? • Tackle what is going to create demand in California. • Bring back the edge to Southern California in order to attract stakeholders. • Create diversity in housing • New “trend” is having higher density, create a new urban place to model. • California must reinvent itself create **DEMAND** • We need to figure out how to compete in today’s economy and bring jobs to SOCAL. • Create a competitive advantage (i.e., silicon valley) • As a result of the Recession we must Reset, Revolve, Revaluate, and Relook

D) Where Do We Start? How to We Address the Problem? • To begin start at the county level, Orange County is very disconnected (driven by politics). We must bring leaders of each city together and ask them what we can do about the disconnect and sprawl of our community. • Next look at the region in terms of the environment look at legislation SB 375, AB 32 (land use and transportation are vital) to change out culture, mindset, and our future. Speak with the author of SB 375 Daryl Steinberg.

1) Regionalism • Cities must collaborate locally to compete with cities worldwide.• Integrate SCAG • The goal is to effect positive change, create an Urban Development Story • OC is the model of suburban development therefore we must create a new model a new story to effect change for a new urban development model. • Ultimately, transportation drives how we create place! • We must answer questions like what will happen to the quality of life in SoCal if gas soars to $7.00?? What happens to growth? Since we live in such a car driven society this will affect our quality of life immensely. • Create a Public-Private Partnership • Utilize a Top-Down Approach state-county-region-city

E) Create a New Urban Development Model • We must create a sustainable model of development. That is attractive globally, that will bring people here. Create a compelling story that will bring the best and brightest to SoCal. • Create a new set of rules. What is the new way of life? • **Redefine what Suburbanization is** the goal is to work with what we have, redefine suburbanization over time. • Design a new model at the micro and macro level a new pattern of development

1) What are the Opportunities?For the future we must think differently.• Create Jobs • Create jobs through sustainability • Think of transportation for the future • Think about food and housing

F) What is the next Paradigm Shift? • DEVELOP A NEW MODEL FOR MODERN LIVING • Encourage redevelopment and utilize edge development • A goal should be setting new guidelines of a new development model

III. Think about our Fundamental Human Needs as a basis of a new model:
1) Transportation
2) Housing
3) Food
4) Jobs
5) Clean Place
6) Culture
**Our basic human needs is the new paradigm shift**

A) What is our End Product?
• A holistic approach (the new development paradigm) to urban development something interactive that should ultimately be spread to not only Orange County but globally.

B) Who is going to use our end product?
• The public (educate them by forums, conferences, lectures, especially through ULI, etc) • Government • The designer (and students)We must become part of ULI’s voice to spread the word about our new paradigm shift in urban development

C) What is hindering developing our new development paradigm?
• City regulations are too strict • Give “power to the people” • Think about how people really want to live vs. how “they” want us to live” • We must have a regulatory change (diversity of housing, density, etc) What problems affect the global, state, city, neighborhood, individual, national, and the region?? What are the solutions??

IV. Conclusions:

We must think differently in order to foster sustainable change. Our culture and thinking is evolving therefore we must create a new way of living. We must change our consumption habits. Utilize the new wave of the future by being holistic in all aspects of life. We must critically enforce the notion of transit in order to change the sprawl infrastructure. The automobile is a major cause of the disconnect in our society; it is handicapping us socially and economically. We must bring people back to place. Design a place for the people not just solely focusing on place. We must use to our advantage the current cultural shift we are in and evolve from the 1950’s consumption residue of materialism. California must reinvent itself to have a competitive advantage domestically and internationally. Create demand! Make people want to live in SoCal. Changing the idea of suburbanization will need much collaboration from the public and private sector. We must bring local leaders together to talk and discuss our current predicament. We must collaborate at all levels at the state, locally and regionally. Current policy and regulations are hindering a new development paradigm shift. We must remedy this by allowing citizens to choose how they want to live and reform draconian policies that are hindering growth socially and economically. We must develop a new model form of modern living. The goal is to create a place that will flourish and retain strong economical and social value. We must reintegrate our space to our culture, to our ways of life; reconnect the gap in our disconnective society. Create a place of value without relying on the car.
Text created as a collaborative effort at the ULI Initiative Council Group.
Photos Courtesy of Tree Hugger

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