"Future City" Class Project


By Mary Pat Lawlor

Planners may be invited to make presentations in local schools. In response, Mary Pat Lawlor developed the “Future City” class program. This program provides a visually pleasing, interactive introduction to city planning, depicts how cities have changed through the ages, and highlights key issues facing planners today. Students learn by exploring ways to solve challenges in cities and engaging in civic matters through consensus-based team work.

Students teams create their own “future city” and are asked to undertake the following tasks:

  • Develop a vision for their future city
  • Come up with a City name (theme) and identify what year it is in the future
  • Prepare a Land Use Plan—decide where people live, work, play, learn, and shop
  • Create a design that addresses all of the required elements using words, colors, drawings, etc.

Teams must come to an agreement on each step of the process before moving on to the next step. There are no wrong ideas, but teams must agree. Once finished, student teams present their work to their classmates and field questions about their plans.

Supporting materials include: Future City Template

For more information contact: Mary Pat Lawlor [email protected].

Image: An artist’s rendering of Italian architect Stefano Boeri’s 117-meter-high tower named La Tour des Cedres, or Tower of Cedars as shown in Dezeen magazine.

Tags: Teachers, Planners, Comprehensive Planning, Social Studies, English Language Arts, The Arts

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