Date of Submission
Academic Programs and Concentrations
Division of Social Studies; Environmental and Urban Studies
Project Advisor 1
Kond District continues to be threatened today with different proposals for demolition. Because this neighborhood covers a large amount of space in the capital of Armenia, the municipality and various property developers have jumped at the opportunity to develop the area. Although the result may be economically viable, the entire process neglects the opinions of the public and rejects a democratic approach to urban planning. This is an issue of human identity that is attached to historical and cultural factors and the economic perspective must take measures to respect this human dimension.
Since the early 1960s, Urban Planner Jane Jacobs challenged the existing city building practices. She attacked the principles of city planning and addressed the issues of safe streets, parks, slums, and city centers.1 Urban planners have recognized the importance of neighborhood and local priorities in such processes. Jacobs challenges the top-down approach to city planning that reigned during the early twentieth century. She argued persuasively that high rises with inner courtyards and street plans didn’t take into account actual usage patterns and in fact contributed to crime and unsafe streets. Planning for healthy, vibrant cities must reflect and preserve safe use of public spaces. She justified planning that locally oriented, reflecting ideal identification of a city by city dwellers rather than abstract ideals. Only such local, neighborhood planning could ensure sustainable livable cities. She advocated the use of sidewalks and claimed the notion of “eyes on the street” for safer neighborhoods.
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Soorenian, Lia, "Navigating Yerevan's Kond: Democratizing Urban Planning" (2014). Senior Projects Spring 2014. 370.