Having an understanding of metropolitan planning and development can provide a policy analyst a more thorough understanding of how communities work and how best to view the impact of a public policy. By examining the history of our communities we can identify key aspects that can create inclusive and vibrant neighborhoods. One such example is by examine the foundation of Chicago, and how through planning, how the city came to be.
Burnham and Bennet were ahead of their of their time when it came to implementing and planning on a large scale. Through their proven innovation and expertise displayed during the 1891 world’s fair, they were able to illustrate large scale planning with great success for public land use. It was through this that I think elected officials and the general public were able to get a glimpse of what possibilities exist for improving city and regional infrastructure on a large scale, rather than utilizing patch-work improvements with little congruity.
With their initial formation of the Chicago planning commission, they were able to side step many of the political aspects that plague the current system. They were able to view the city and suburbs as a whole and by doing so ensure that congruence existed to optimize efficiency such as consolidating mass transit stations while providing a unified aesthetic look to the city. The independence they had as planners ensured that any one project did not overshadow another due to political advantage or cronyism, and because of their belief in civic leadership, they were able to ensure that the general public was truly served.
By understanding the the history of our communities, we as analysts are better able to plan and provide solutions to our communities through thorough analysis and recommendations.