From Abandonment to Urban Qualities?

Urban design strategies for shrinking cities in Germany and the United States

Authored by: Karina Pallagst , René Fleschurz , Sabrina Förch

The New Companion to Urban Design

Print publication date:  May  2019
Online publication date:  June  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138302129
eBook ISBN: 9780203731932
Adobe ISBN:


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The chance offered by shrinking cities lies in the potential to trigger changes, reforms, and even innovations in planning and urban design. This chapter first discusses how and why some cities have experienced shrinkage and presents planning policies and design strategies for dealing with shrinkage. Two different contexts were selected for this comparative research: one city in Germany (Herne), and one city in the United States (Cleveland, Ohio). Both cities show comparable conditions in terms of their shrinkage paths, population development, and economic structures, yet their planning contexts are different. Drawing from this comparative exploration, this chapter highlights how shrinkage has affected these two cities and details how they have responded.

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