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Thread: I am not a professional

  1. #1
    Member
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    I am not a professional

    Please allow me to introduce myself.

    I have long taken an interest in the theory of regional planning and the human environment, without ever having had to put it into practice. Although I have no formal training in planning per se, I have a graduate degree in political science and spent some of my coursework in urban politics. As such I've been particularly interested in the clash of interests involved in renegotiating the built environment, transportation systems, quality of street life, and so on.

    I also have an interest in the design side, but merely as an aficianado. My drawing skills have remained stuck since the third grade. Still, I'll make an effort to find a Frank Lloyd Wright building if I'm in a new city.

    In real life I work in health care policy, partly because of some choices I'd made early in my career, and partly because it's a field where the job market will always be open. Still, as a second love (or mistress) I keep half an eye on the urban politics and planning world, and find there are some crossovers (e.g. retirement communities, industrial siting and their externalities, transportation for low income people, and others)

    Over the course of time I've read much of the classic planning literature people recommend: (A Pattern Language, Life and Death, Edge Cities, Home From Nowhere, City of Quartz . I'd always appreciate more suggestions.

    I hope to learn a lot from participating, but at first I'll just lurk.

  2. #2
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Glad to see you've joined us! Feel free to butt in anytime and share your opinions and ideas with us....I for one love getting feedback and opinions of non-professionals. I'm sure you'll find Cyburbia a diverse place where lots of ideas and opionions are welcome!
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  3. #3
    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    As always it is nice to have another voice and another perspective. Don't lurk for too long, jump right in if you have ideas or comments to share.

    Welcome aboard.
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

  4. #4
    Cyburbian el Guapo's avatar
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    Hell, I'm faking it too. Welcome to Cyburbia.
    el Guapo is a former 20 year +/- urban planner (just like you) who thought becoming an attorney was a good life choice.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Plus PlannerGirl's avatar
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    Welcome-and you are quite welcome to post here, we would love ideas and input from non "professional" planners.

    PG
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin

    Remember this motto to live by: "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming 'WOO- HOO what a ride!'"

  6. #6
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    Welcome aboard. Many of us would say you are an ideal candidate for a planning commission member...but I am not certain many mayors would agree.

  7. #7
    maudit anglais
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    Welcome aboard - there are no qualifications needed (well, a sense of humour helps) to join in the discussions here!

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    This is a planning site?! When did that happen?

    Spend some time in the FAC, if nowhere else. We touch on many topics that have little to do with planning, and always welcome opinions of others in the planning ones, too.

  9. #9
          Downtown's avatar
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    Ditto everyone else. welcome aboard. a lot of planners also harbor secret polysci tendacies (and undergrad minors).

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Queen B's avatar
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    Welcome, Your location says Lawrence. Beautiful city. Good Beer...LOVE downtown shopping, I only wish that more cities could pull off what downtown Lawrence has.

    So are you even slightly interested in possible planning positions in that area of the country?

  11. #11
    Member
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    Well, I've only moved to Lawrence in the past year because of a new job. Before that I was in DC. My wife and I consider ourselves refugees from the war on terror.

    Seriously, while I still care about what's been going on in DC regional development, and may move back eventually; we moved willingly because it's comparatively hard to raise a family there on a mid-level bureaucrat's salary while still having access to good urban amenities.

    I agree that the urban environment here in Lawrence represents a good mix of what other smallish towns are missing. (Go Freestate Brewery!) But I've just begun to get attuned to the local political climate, and there is some contention between pro- and anti-development political wings that is also too wrapped up in people's baggage of right and left wing ideologies.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Queen B's avatar
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    Yes, go Free State Brewery!
    And at this point I know GO KU is SSOOOO thick there, you can't get away from it.

    As far as pro and anti development wings, it is probably also deeply rooted in good old boy and my daddy's had this land. If you ain't from around here....don't tell me!

    Hmm, DC to Lawrence what a switch, I can't even imagine.

  13. #13
    Member
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    Leaving behind the big city wasn't so hard. I've had a preference for the quality of life of medium-size college towns, having spent time in Ann Arbor and the NC Research Triangle as well. I just wish it were easier for other cities of 50-200,000 without major universities to acquire those amenities as well.

    Perhaps that should be a new thread.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Plus PlannerGirl's avatar
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    Lol I left NC to come to DC-the draw of the big city



    Enjoy your new town, hopefuly the traffic is MUCH better.
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin

    Remember this motto to live by: "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming 'WOO- HOO what a ride!'"

  15. #15
    Cyburbian
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    Welcome aboard... thank god I'm not the only non-proffesional here

    Although I must be the most active person of my age group in this forum

  16. #16
    Thats kind of like me when i make my maps, i plan out the streets, then the buildings (Government, residencial, commercial, etc) and then i fill it all in. Then in my mind i simulate what it would like to be in my city. It's hard, but in the end you can make better cities, in the next little while i will be showing my city on the web.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian
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    darcy... do you know that there's a game called Sim city, right?
    While I also like to invent cities and such things, I prefer to do them in Sim City (now SC4 )
    I saw your maps in your website, but I think you should also put what each thing means, and obviosly the aproximated scale that the map is... otherwise it isn't very usefull Just some constructive critique

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