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Challenges 2011, 2(4), 45-54; doi:10.3390/challe2040045

Reinventing Detroit: Reclaiming Grayfields—New Metrics in Evaluating Urban Environments

* ,
School of Planning Design and Construction, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48823, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 August 2011 / Revised: 20 September 2011 / Accepted: 21 September 2011 / Published: 27 September 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges in City Design: Realize the Value of Cities)
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Planners, designers, citizens, and governmental agencies are interested in creating environments that are sustainable and fulfill a wide range of economic, ecological, aesthetic, functional, and cultural expectations for stakeholders. There are numerous approaches and proposals to create such environments. One vision is the 1934 “Broadacre City” proposed by Frank Lloyd Wright for the Taliesin, Wisconsin area that was never implemented. Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision integrated transportation, housing, commercial, agricultural, and natural areas in a highly diverse pattern forming a vast urban savanna complex. He also applied his “Broadacre City” idea to the 1942 Cooperative Homesteads Community Project in Detroit, Michigan, another un-built project. This vision concerning the composition of the urban environment may be conceptually realized in the ongoing gray-field reclamation in suburban Detroit, Michigan. Recent science-based investigations, concerning the metrics to measure and evaluate the quality of designed spaces, suggest that this “Broadacre City” approach may have great merit and is highly preferred over past spatial treatments (p ≤ 0.05). These metrics explain 67 to 80% of the variance concerning stakeholder expectations and are highly definitive (p < 0.001).
Keywords: landscape planning; landscape urbanism; landscape architecture landscape planning; landscape urbanism; landscape architecture
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Burley, J.; Deyoung, G.; Partin, S.; Rokos, J. Reinventing Detroit: Reclaiming Grayfields—New Metrics in Evaluating Urban Environments. Challenges 2011, 2, 45-54.

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