Swamp rats, fat cats and soggy suburbs : planners and engineers in south east Florida
Author(s)Phelan, Katherine A., 1971-
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
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U.S. cities continue to physically expand, supported by and creating demand for water supply, road, sewerage, electricity networks. But the relationship between the professional values, education and practices of city or urban planning and civil engineering, and these infrastructure networks is an under-explored phenomenon in both fields. This doctoral dissertation contributes important new knowledge about the decisions and recommendations of planners and engineers for infrastructure and growth, and their resulting impact on the shape of rapidly growing urban areas. A qualitative method results in qualified conclusions about continuity, change and contradiction in the two professions' beliefs, actions and their physical influence on the built environment. Studying these two professions in the swampland context of south east Florida exposes their professional beliefs and actions in relation to infrastructure conception and implementation, and urban expansion. The involvement of planners and engineers with the canals and ditches used to drain the Everglades have been crucial to the accommodation of urban population growth on the east coast of the Florida peninsula. But neither profession appears satisfied with the extent of their influence on urban growth in Florida or the nation. At the same time, increases in population, number of households and land consumption will continue across the United States. The dissertation concludes that the professions must improve their understanding of the relationship between the spatial and non-spatial issues of infrastructure systems. The three-dimensional, physical aspects of urban expansion provide a real opportunity for both fields to reinvigorate and reinforce their professional expertise.(cont.) The diverse elements of the development process need to be more extensively examined within a significant increase in collaborative research on growth, infrastructure and the professional practice of both disciplines. It is imperative that such results are accessible and useful to the practitioners of planning and engineering who deal with these issues on a daily basis.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning, 2004."September 2004."Includes bibliographical references (p. 319-373).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Urban Studies and Planning.