What Is Master Planning?

Architects planning at tableA master plan is a detailed strategic document that gives a long-term plan on how a development is going to grow and expand in the future. This means highlighting the different buildings in an area, and how those buildings connect and interact with the environment around them. This is a necessity for development in urban areas. A master plan can include a large amount of details, and rightly should. Here are the two major components of a master plan:

  • Feasibility Study: Early in the process of creating a master plan, we conduct a feasibility study that reviews the different options for development of an area. The purpose of this study is to analyze the scope of a site and the existing architecture around it, to determine what different paths there are to creating a vibrant new space within the city or neighborhood.
  • Strategic Framework: After a feasibility study has been done, we create what we call a strategic framework, which creates a single point of reference for the development strategy of an area. This covers the historical, physical, social, and geological details of the site and how they factor into the architecture and construction.

Elements of Urban Strategy

A master plan needs to address many details about the current state of a development, and how that development is expected to change in the future. Here are some of the elements of a master plan or urban strategy:

  • Neighborhood Personality: There is an existing personality and history within each neighborhood, and it is important for new development to address those existing details and work within the framework that they provide. A master plan takes into account the personality of a neighborhood and how new construction factors into that personality.
  • Open Spaces: A master plan needs to outline public and open spaces in a development. The plan should detail the exact size, function, and scope of these spaces.
  • Multi-Usage: An urban development area needs to include properties that fulfill a variety of uses. For this reason, a master plan needs to show how much of the development will be used for commercial purposes, industrial purposes, and housing purposes.
  • Water Integration: Water is crucial for any development, which is why a master plan must identify existing waterways that will be used, or else identify how new waterways will be integrated into the development.
  • Biodiversity: Any new developments will have an impact on wildlife and biodiversity in an area, and a master plan needs to address that. A responsible master plan also details any effects that will be done to wetlands and waterfronts.
  • Transportation: A master plan needs to consider the expected population of a development, and then showcase how the transportation needs will be met. This means detailing streets, walkways, sidewalks, bike routes, public transportation, and how all of these aspects connect with the wider transportation system in a municipality.

Learn More!

If you have any questions about urban development, architecture, or the master planning process, then please contact our team, today!