Why Urban Planning is the Most Important Career Field Globally

The urban planning is a large part of how the small settlements and towns grow into large cities to become places where individuals can thrive and live. Urban planning is dealing more than just where things go or how they should look. With urban planning, there are many options and career paths in which urban planners can take relating to the different aspects of planning a city.

Just a few short aspects include things such as city, sustainability, comprehensive, economic, environmental, transportation planning, and many others. City planning is one of the most recognized and basic parts of urban planning. The city planners are in charge of many different things when it comes to developing an area or neighbourhood.

The city planners do things like examine zoning codes, deciding where buildings should be places, along with parks and other landmarks that make a community. City planners are in charge of community outreach and creating an idea of what a community should look like and how to make it better.

Urban Planning

Urban planning is one career that can be seen as the technical and political process that is concerned with the development and use of

  • Land
  • Planning permission
  • Protection and use of the environment
  • Public welfare and
  • the design of the urban environment which include air, water, and the infrastructure passing into and out of urban areas, such as transportation, communications, and distribution networks.

Urban planning is considered an interdisciplinary field that includes social, engineering and design sciences. Urban planning is closely related to the field of urban design and some urban planners provide designs for streets, parks, buildings and other urban areas.

Career Options and Job Prospects for Urban Planners

There are many scope for the urban planners. Urban planning is aimed at providing the students with a sound education in urban and regional planning. As a career, planning offers a real opportunity to play a key role in shaping places and localities across the globe.

Urban planning can be seen as a technical and political process concerned with the welfare of people, control of the use of land, design of the urban environment including transportation and communication networks, and protection and enhancement of the natural environment.

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Urban development is societal development. Planning and managing the development of contemporary cities is one of the major societal challenges all over the world today.

Skills and Competencies Required in Urban and Regional Planning

  • Good analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Good communication skills.
  • Organisational skills.
  • Understanding of social-economic issues.
  • Understanding of environmental and cultural issues.
  • Mediation and negotiation skills.
  • Knowledge of planning law and legislation;
  • Finance and policy development;
  • Strategic thinking;
  • Analytical research;
  • Making a reasoned argument;
  • Professional report writing and presentation;
  • Partnership working and collaboration.
  • Creativity
  • Pragmatism and sensitivity.

Jobs directly related to Urban Planning

  • Facilities manager
  • Historic buildings inspector/conservation officer
  • Housing manager/officer
  • Local government officer
  • Town planner
  • Transport planner
  • Urban Planner
  • Urban Designer
  • Planning Advisor
  • Planning Manager
  • Building surveyor
  • Civil Service administrator
  • Community development worker
  • Environmental manager
  • Estate agent
  • Landscape architect
  • Planning and development surveyor
  • Sustainability consultant and much more

Some of the Functions of the Urban Planners

  • Meeting with public officials, developers, and the public regarding development plans and land use
  • Gathering and analyze economic and environmental studies, censuses, and market research data
  • Conducting field investigations to analyze factors affecting land use
  • Reviewing site plans submitted by developers
  • Assessing the feasibility of proposals and identify needed changes
  • Recommending whether proposals should be approved or denied
  • Presenting projects to planning officials and planning commissions
  • Staying current on zoning or building codes, environmental regulations, and other legal issues

The urban planners are the one that identifies community needs and develop short- and long-term plans to create, grow, or revitalize a community or area. For example, they may examine plans for proposed facilities, such as schools, to ensure that these facilities will meet the needs of a changing population.

As an area grows or changes, planners help communities manage the related economic, social, and environmental issues, such as planning a new park, sheltering the homeless, or making the region more attractive to businesses.

In the early stage of a project, the urban planners work with public officials, community members, and other groups to identify community issues or goals. Using research, data analysis, and collaboration with interest groups, planners formulate strategies to address issues or meet goals.

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Urban planners also help in carrying out community plans, oversee projects, and organize the work of the groups involved. Projects may range from a policy recommendation for a specific initiative to a long-term, comprehensive area plan.

The urban planners use a variety of tools and technology in their work, including geographic information systems (GIS) tools that analyze and manipulate data. GIS is used to integrate the data with electronic maps.

For example, planners may use a geographic information system (GIS) to overlay a land map with population density indicators. They also use statistical software, visualization and presentation programs, financial spreadsheets, and other database and software programs. Continue reading

Urban Planning and Environmental Sustainability

Sustainability is a large part of urban planning as well. Sustainability is essential the way to make sure a community last and is sustainable over a period of time. A large part of sustainable planning is now focused on building communities in a more environmentally friendly way, and to not damage the surrounding area as much.

Going hand in hand with sustainability is comprehensive planning, which takes a look at the much larger picture of planning. Urban planning is the overview of all the other types of planning and puts them all into one large plan, which means that these planners work with regions and counties more so than a single neighbourhood.

An important part of any community or area is the environment, which is a major part of urban planning. Often, environmental planners work alongside other agencies to determine whether certain areas are viable for development, or should be preserved for habitats or other reasons such as chemical waste.

Another focus of environmental planners is things such as water and waste management and how that can affect the surrounding environment, and these planners make sure that development projects will obey the different laws regarding the environment and permits when under construction.

Transportation planning is also a large part of planning because without proper ways to move goods, services, and people throughout a community or city efficiently, will lead to problems. Managing bus routes, subway routes and many other forms of transportation are just a small part of this type of planning. A rather large part of planning is economic development.

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The economy is how a city thrives and grows, therefore making sure the economy is stable and that there are many opportunities for growth and jobs is vital in urban planning. Economic development planners often evaluate areas and where the economy could grow, and from there set forth a plan to bring in businesses or services to make the proposed growth happen.

The other aspect of urban planning is revitalization of projects and making neighborhoods a more desirable place to live, which is becoming more popular today, because it creates less damage to the environment by not disturbing undeveloped land, but may be much costlier in the long run.

Urban planning is a large career field, and a very large part of the world we live in. Without all these different pieces of one thing coming together with the way, our cities work would fall apart. Urban planning is not just important for the purposes of having efficient and beautiful towns and cities, but it is also a large part of protecting our environment.

Without urban planning, developments would be allowed a lot of different places, potentially destroying habits and killing off numerous species of animals. Understanding Urban Development and investing in it is not just a good career choice, but also an investment in our planet and the sustainability of communities. Source

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About the author

I am Adegboyega Tunde Temitayo. A registered Town Planner with the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP) and Town Planners Registration Council (TOPREC).

I love to think differently and possibly on various Urban and Regional Planning issues to proffer solutions to Urban and Rural Environmental Problems. You can subscribe to my YouTube Channel

As the Chief Editor of Town Planners Diary, I humbly welcome you to this platform which is about enhancing Planning Education through research on various Town Planning and Environmental issues.

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