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Open Access Publications from the University of California


The Berkeley Planning Journal is an annual peer-reviewed journal published by graduate students in the Department of City and Regional Planning (DCRP) at the University of California, Berkeley since 1985.

20th Anniversary Volume

Issue cover

Editorial Notes

Editor's Note

You are holding Volume 18 of the Berkeley Planning Journal, which marks our 20'" anniversary and 20'" printed edition. The BPJ has consistently offered engaging and provocative articles in the field of city planning, and Volume 18 is no different. With this edition, we are pleased to introduce a new look to the Journal's cover and interior. Whereas earlier volumes have traditionally featured Berkeley's fabled Campanile on the cover, with Vol­ ume 18 we turn the gaze around and now find ourselves inside the bell room looking out.


Network Power for Social Change: Grassroots Organizing Efforts via Information Technologies in California’s Central Valley

This article analyzes how two community organizing networks in California’s Central Valley, the Central Valley Partnership (CVP) and the Civic Action Network (CAN), use information technologies to create strong multi-ethnic advocacy groups. Like formal organizational structures “from above,” these grassroots groups “from below” take advantage of information tech- nologies to maximize limited resources and minimize barriers to collective action to further their social justice agendas. By utilizing Castells’ Informa- tion Age framework and emerging theories from the planning field on “network power” through collaboration, this article addresses the research gap on grassroots-level networks and identifies the type of power these organizations can attain by networking via information technologies. The article examines the social morphology of these two grassroots networks and reveals the technological obstacles and constraints for community development organizations that use information technology to form advo- cacy networks. The research finds that the two case study networks strate- gically use information technologies to their advantage to increase and strengthen the inter-connectivity of their network communication structure, thereby increasing the power of their network.

Planning for People: Integrating Social Issues and Processes into Planning Practice

This paper rejects the view that planners plan for use, not people. We observe that planners often see human needs and behavior to be peripheral to practice, focusing on financial, technical, material or environmental con- siderations. We argue that people — through social issues, social pro- cesses, and social organization — are fundamental to all planning activities. Therefore, all planners must more effectively integrate the social dimen- sions of planning into practice. The article first discusses several shifts in the social sciences, and second, examines three Canadian case studies: ecosystem planning and management in a UNESCO biosphere reserve; infrastructure planning in a northern resource town; and regional planning for homelessness in a medium-size metropolitan region. The paper con- cludes with a discussion of common strategies, successes, and challenges, highlighting the role of planners in the integration of social dimensions into planning practice.

The Center for Cities & Schools: Connecting Research and Policy Agendas

This article discusses an emerging policy and research agenda; systemati- cally linking quality schools with quality cities. There is an historic discon- nect between cities and public education. To dismantle this disconnect, the Center for Cities & Schools was established in 2004, by the Institute of Urban and Regional Development (IURD) at the University of California, Berkeley. The Center holds that high-quality education is a critical compo- nent of broader city and metropolitan policy-making and that invigorating public education and revitalizing neighborhoods are goals that can, and should, be accomplished in tandem. To contextualize the issues and the role of the Center, this paper provides a transcript and discussion of the two keynote addresses at the Center’s fall 2004 symposium, which featured Bruce Katz, a Vice President at the Brookings Institution and founding Director of the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program, and Dr. Arlene Ackerman, Superintendent of the San Francisco Unified School District.

Architecture and Landscapes of Segregation: An Historical Look at the Built Environment of Educational Facilities in the United States

Within the field of landscape architecture and architecture, historians and critics often have sought to view the “college campus as art.” This concept portrays the individual buildings as a collection of artifacts, giving little attention to the cultural and historical meanings of space, both surrounding the buildings and between the buildings. Studies of this nature tend to focus on styles, motifs, and artistic significance of individual edifices. Likewise, historic architectural studies examine the importance that buildings have in relation to their adornments, their design motifs, and their artists or architects who created them. This analysis challenges these values and associations through an evaluation of historically black college and university campuses (HBCU’s) and “segregated public schools” of the Southern United States. Through a review of literature on court cases about school segregation and an examination of built environments, this article suggests that architectural and landscape studies are important in conveying notions of inferiority and tradition that were used in segregation cases across the United States. The case studies in this analysis jointly express how architecture and landscape represent and shape race relations in the United States and address shortcomings in the literature of architecture and landscapes that fail to show a connection between the antebellum and postbellum lives of African Americans in the United States. A comprehensive understanding of segregation requires an investigation of spatial and built environments to analyze the feelings and experiences of people throughout time, rather than a simple focus on historic events.

The Garden Valley: Remembering Visions and Values in 1950s Cleveland with Allan Jacobs

In the summer of 1954 a young graduate from the University of Pennsylvania’s city planning program was asked to design a public hous- ing complex in the heart of Cleveland, Ohio. Ambitions were high; the Garden Valley, as the project was christened, was to be a modern, clean, mixed-use, racially and economically integrated community that would be a “model neighborhood for all of Cleveland.” The ambitions belied the setting, for the project was planned for a decidedly inauspicious location: Kingsbury Run, a dangerous, disreputable, polluted gully that had been the site of the dirtiest industrial facilities, Depression-era shantytowns, and an infamous series of murders. The young planner was Allan Jacobs, now a figure of great renown in city planning for his public, academic, writing, and consulting careers. Jacobs is currently professor emeritus in the De- partment of City and Regional Planning at the University of California, Berkeley. Based on his work developing an overall plan for the Kingsbury Run site, hundreds of new publicly and privately owned apartment units would be constructed in a garden-like setting, providing housing for thou- sands of low- and middle-income Clevelanders. Yet within just two years of the first units’ construction the Garden Valley was already considered run- down and undesirable, a reputation that would grow and deepen with time, a reputation the area has struggled with ever since. How is it that an auspicious combination of good intentions, significant resources, and uncom- mon talent was not enough to ensure the success of the project? Did the original conceptual design and the dominant values that influenced it play a role in setting the stage for the difficulties to come? This article, based largely on a series of conversations with Allan Jacobs, explores these questions by telling the story of his first summer of professional design work in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio.

Guiding Perth’s Growth: A Regional Perspective

This article examines historic and current regional planning efforts undertaken in the Perth, Australia metropolitan region that have defined its current development form. Using case study analysis, the article discusses the major plans that have influenced the region, environmental constraints to urban development, corridor planning techniques, and future planning ini- tiatives. Key to the Perth context is the primarily British-style planning process that is used in Western Australia. Findings reveal that corridor planning will continue to provide the primary regional planning frame- work, and planning in the Perth region will take a more interdisciplinary approach with respect to environmental concerns.

Deep Discount Group Pass Programs: Innovative Transit Finance

For public transit operators in the U.S., neither fare increases nor fare reduc- tions have been successful in boosting revenues. A different kind of strat- egy is needed, one that can produce more revenue for transit operators than it costs. This article argues that deep discount group pass (DDGP) programs can accomplish this goal. DDGP programs provide groups of people with unlimited-ride transit passes in exchange for a contractual pay- ment by a group’s employer or other organizing body.

While previous research on DDGP programs has ignored their impact on operator revenues, this article addresses that gap by focusing on their revenue-increasing potential. The study estimated and compared before and after revenues earned by three transit operators to draw conclusions about the revenue-increasing potential of group pass programs. The universal DDGP programs analyzed consistently yielded either higher revenues per boarding than the system-wide average or higher total revenues from target markets with the program than without it, proving their potential as innovative instruments for increasing transit operating revenues. Employment-based DDGP programs yielded the highest net revenues to operators. When appropriately priced and carefully deployed, DDGP pro- grams can increase transit revenues, make transit operators less reliant on external subsidy, and become powerful instruments of efficient fare policy in public transit.


Recent Doctoral Dissertations and Masters Reports

Doctoral Dissertations, Master's Theses, and Master's Professional Reports from the Class of 2005.