The Department of Urban and Regional Planning invites all to attend the program's final studio presentations. Studios this semester have explored topics including COVID-19 evictions, opportunities for electric micromobility deployment in Buffalo, NY, and comprehensive planning options for the Village of Springville, in southern Erie County.
Monday, May 3 at 2 PM
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted and exacerbated the inequitable outcomes of the American housing system, particularly a worsening eviction crisis. The pandemic-fueled housing crisis has the potential to be particularly dire in Rust Belt cities, where economic restructuring and systemic racism have already created communities suffering from heightened housing instability. This report synthesizes economic analysis, spatial data, stakeholder interviews, news media analysis, and policy literature review to propose programs and policies to prevent evictions and improve housing stability in Buffalo, NY, Pittsburgh, PA, and Detroit, MI.
Wednesday, May 5 at 3 PM
Electric micromobility (EMM) has the potential to enhance transportation systems, reduce environmental impacts, improve personal well-being, and promote equity. The deployment of EMM devices in shared mobility systems, such as ReddyBike, will promote usage of these devices and amplify the aforementioned benefits by providing affordable access to EMM devices. However, as EMM technologies and shared mobility systems are novel and rapidly evolving, the likely extent of these benefits is uncertain, particularly in Upstate NY. Our MUP practicum examines the benefits and challenges of deploying EMM devices in Buffalo, NY. Using a mobility justice lens, this studio views EMM as a catalyst to address structural and systemic disinvestments in marginalized and over-policed communities, especially neighborhoods inhabited by immigrants and people of color. As such, the design and policy ideas proposed in this studio focus on using EMM piloting to revitalize neighborhoods while safeguarding against gentrification. These revitalization efforts involve addressing existing issues such as access to resources, first- and last-mile transportation needs, and spurring economic growth in and for marginalized communities.
Monday, May 10 at 2 PM
Our studio was asked to inform potential revisions to the Village of Springville’s Comprehensive Plan. Working closely with the mayor, our students have investigated economic and demographic trends, housing affordability and initiatives to increase it, the energizing of the downtown through streetscape changes, feasibility of new downtown commercial and residential development, greenway connections between parks, the village’s potential as hub in bike networks, water infrastructure improvements, and possibilities for coordinated economic development. To investigate these concepts, students have been consulting with local residents and county and state officials. Our results will be presented as a set of directions toward a comprehensive plan.