I have moved this blog to my new website: JEREMYNEMETH.COM. See you there!
On June 9-10, I will be participating in a conference at Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School. The symposium is called Hyper-Public: A symposium on designing privacy and public space in the connected world.
Here are two papers I’ve written on the subject:
Working paper: Control in the commons (working paper), 2011
Privatization of public space (Urban Studies), 2009
Learn more about me by reading this interview that appeared in the February edition of the University of Colorado system newsletter.
Here is my editorial in the Denver Post from Sunday, March 27, 2011, where I show that security zones in US cities still remain nearly a decade after 9/11. I argue that security planners must strike a balance between safety and civil liberties.
Update: for those of you interested in understanding the location and extent of various streetscape elements in Downtown Denver, check out our updated class website. Students mapped benches, trash cans, news corrals, sidewalk cafes, and many other elements in Downtown Denver using various technology platforms (e.g. 3G phones, iPhones, GPS devices, paper maps, etc.).
I wrote about this project previously here.
I recently published an article called “The privatization of public space: Modeling and measuring publicness” in Environment and Planning B, volume 38, issue 1 with Professor Stephan Schmidt of Cornell University. This study empirically determines whether, as is commonly believed, privately owned public parks and plazas are more “controlled” than publicly owned spaces. We examine several hundred examples of each type of space in New York City, and find that the having the private sector provide publicly accessible space does, in fact, lead to significantly increased control over use, behavior, and access. One of the major takeaways is a useful conceptual model we produced that identifies publicness as the interaction between the ownership, management, and users of a space.
To be filed under the “toot your own horn” category, I was just asked to serve on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Urban Design. I accepted.
In this recent Denver Urbanism post, I present a project just completed by students in the professional Master of Urban and Regional Planning (MURP) program at UC Denver. Our aim as faculty there is to provide graduates the skills, knowledge and expertise to become not only good planners, but leaders in the profession. Our approach is twofold: we introduce students to the newest planning theories and methods, and we have students work on real projects with real impact on real Metro area communities.
This fall, I introduced a four-week module in my 60-student introductory Planning Methods I course. The question motivating the module was how recent advances in open source data, mobile technologies, internet-based platforms, and user-generated mapping and visualization softwares affect everyday planning tasks like data collection and analysis and public consultation and participation.
Working with the Public Realm Committee of the Downtown Denver Partnership, teams of students collected data using 3G Smartphones (iPhones, Androids), traditional GPS receivers, paper maps and GPS-enabled digital cameras and evaluated each method on a set of criteria. They found that Smartphones worked best for this quick collection and analysis effort for three reasons:
- Efficiency: Full-time 3G web access enables immediate upload of data as they are collected. Although 95% of students had no prior experience, they learned the protocol and collected 2200+ data points in one afternoon.
- Accuracy: In high-density city centers, where traditional GPS devices fail to function due to limited satellite access, Smartphones do not need overhead clearance since they geolocate by bouncing signals off cell towers.
- Multifunctionality: Smartphones are telephones, making it easier to communicate with fellow group or technical team members.
Former MURP student Michael Hinke of Decision Support Resources built a fantastic interactive WEBSITE that presents the results of the students’ data collection efforts and provides links to collected databases. Visitors can download shapefiles and kml files too; the goal is to disseminate the data as widely as possible, because we all benefit from a better understanding of our city.
The weekly University of Colorado newsletter, which reaches several hundred faculty, staff, students and alumni, recently chose me for the “Five Questions” feature. They actually gave me fourteen questions to answer, then chose these five from my answers. Click HERE to learn more about me, my background, and how I became interested in urban planning and design.
I have begun to blog for friend Ken Schroeppel’s new blog DenverUrbanism.com. Ken is famous for his wonderful site DenverInfill.com, and this new blog represents a new forum for discussing all things urbanism, especially as it relates to Denver, Colorado. An excerpt of first post is copied below, with the full posting located HERE.
Urbanism and urban design: What’s the difference?
Urbanism is a lens through which to view and interpret the city. Urbanists attempt to understand how economic, political, social, ecological and cultural characteristics of place affect urban form and social life. While the most well-known and codified “formal” urbanism is, of course, the New Urbanism, recent entries to the field range from the environmentally-focused (Ecological, Landscape or Sustainable Urbanism), to the people-centered (Participatory or DIY Urbanism) to the….well, I’m not exactly sure (Bricole, Propagative, Gypsy or Retrofuture Urbanism).
Urban design, on the other hand, moves beyond the study of space; it is the practice of actively shaping the city in a desired fashion. Urban designers improve the livability of cities by translating plans into physical strategies, establishing design criteria for development projects, designing the space between buildings, and arranging public spaces, streets, blocks, neighborhoods and infrastructure in a logical and meaningful way. Good urban designers account for built, human, and natural systems, and are thus inherently interdisciplinary practitioners. The finest urban designers trust their instincts and training but also rely on the best research possible, whether from academic sources or from their own public outreach. In this way, urban design is both art and science, occupying the conceptual space between architecture and urban planning.