The Forest as a Future Ecology for Twentieth-Century Retail Landscapes in the Midwest: A Case Study of Columbus, Ohio

This article examines the ecological and spatial consequences of large-scale retail centers in the Midwest, specifically Columbus, Ohio, affected by the phenomena of changing urban trends and consumer behavior. The landscape of retail industry is changing as we know it. Consumer behavior has shifted to online and experiential shopping, leaving retail’s big box asphalt landscapes as obsolete spaces in the urban fabric of many cities, most notably those in the Midwest. While the ecological and social impact of these spaces have been known for over ten years, very little advancement, change, and adaptation can be seen in the way cities plan for growth and regeneration; the car remains a driving force behind design of all urban forms. Using the Paris Agreement on climate change as a guide for urban transformation, this research seeks to develop strategies for forestation practices for regional and community retail centers, which will enrich environmental values, create social identity, and, in turn, increase the economic value of surrounding communities.

Urban Design to Improve Health Conditions: The Case of Shanghai’s Taopu Area Brownfield Redevelopment

The typical objectives of brownfield redevelopment are site clean-up and putting contaminated land to productive uses. This article features a brownfield case that not only remediated pollution but went further, promoting the inhabitants’ physical and emotional well-being. This article first reviews the extant studies on brownfield redevelopment and how they connect to urban design for better human health. It then focuses on the case study of the Taopu area in Shanghai’s Putuo District, which was an old industrial brownfield near the core of Shanghai. The urban design for the Taopu area utilized an integrated and progressive approach that not only mitigates the existing brownfield condition, but also promotes better human health by adjusting the urban grid, planning pedestrian and vehicular pathways and formulating a new urban greenway system. More and more Chinese cities are drafting health city plans and creating healthy neighborhoods. This brownfield redevelopment case study can provide valuable urban design ideas to promote inhabitants’ health and well-being.

The City as a Playground: Shaping City Space to be More Playful for Individuals of Any Age

In this article, urban spaces in which people of any age can fulfill their needs related to entertainment and fun will be presented and characterized. The aim of the article is to go down the current of interdisciplinary research, elaborating on the assumption that cities should meet people’s every need, including those related to fun. Based on in situ studies and literature studies, it has been proven that the city can provide the scenery for different types of human activity, including the expression of its more joyful and relaxed nature, which is not a sign of its infantilization but a chance to relax and release stress. In addition, fun and games enable humans to develop their talents and creativity and provide an opportunity to explore innovative ideas, which is very desirable in the modern world.