Effects of Urban Crime on the Urban Environment

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Technical Paper by: Ms. Adit Padhi (aditipadhi@gmail.com)

“Greater concern about terrorism places new opportunities before the design community. If protection is considered from the outset, design can make buildings and people safer.”1 Introduction Violent crime was the issue of the nineties, while terrorism has become the talk at the onset of 21st century. Understanding crime prevention design is therefore an invaluable tool in organization and maintenance of order in our societies. Planner and sociologist Duncan describes “ a social problem as a recurrent condition that has been defined by influential groups as a deviation from social standards.”2 When a social deviance exceeds group definition it becomes a crime. Urban environment and urban crime Robert Gold in his article “ Urban violence and contemporary defensive spaces” indicates that CRIME was always widespread during periods of the past. He argues that violent crime has been increasing at an alarming pace, in large metropolitan areas. “Urban environment and violent behavior 3

Design and form of the urban environment may directly control violence. The residential areas, for example, may be selected by a criterion of distance from populations with real or assumed tendencies to commit violence, or individual buildings or entire communities can be “fortified” by crime-control features with social aesthetic values subordinated or entirely eliminated. Design and form of the urban environment may invite violence. Historical background of Urban Crime Preventive Design Historical responses to crime in the cities of the past are varied, and can be described from the middle-ages to the present as “a sequence of changing defensive parameters.”4. The early Chinese had municipal administrations, the Hebrews had policing and Medieval Europe, had its walled cities. As the cities grew larger, a demand for new forms of protection increased. The city of PARIS and its problems of public order are documented and reveal, that its typical pattern of a medieval city increased its crime rates. In 1667, Louis XIV appointed La Reynie, who illuminated the streets within a decade and razed notorious slums, planting trees and re-planning Paris. By the 18th Century Haussman restored public order to Paris, and France was the acknowledged world leader in European architecture and urban design. Can sound urban planning help reduce urban crime and Violence? 5 Urban planners are often the boundary spanners between city departments and community residents in terms of crime prevention and control practices. The “City Beautiful” movement at the end of the last century was also based, in part, upon the belief that if people had a more pleasant physical environment, they would be less inclined to commit crime. From Filarete’s Sforzinda of the 1460’s to Le Corbusier’s Ville radieuse of the 1930’s, the great ideal cities have formed a special category within the utopian tradition. To build the ideal society is to create the utopian society. Plans for ideal city are important as lacking the vision for new social order, in existing cities has led to disorder and violence.6 1

Design with fear, Thomas Vonier, Progressive Architecture, August 1985 2

robert a. Dentler. P. 1977. Urban problems perspectives and solutions. Chp 2 urban problem-solving pg. 17 3

w . Mcq. P. 19-- . Cities fit to live in. Chp 1 urban violence and contemporary defencive cities. Robert gold

4 w . Mcq. P. 19-- . Cities fit to live in. Chp 1 urban violence and contemporary defencive cities. Robert gold pg. 5 5


By MITCHELL J. RYCUS (Professor of Urban Planning at the University of Michigan, USA) www.tcaup.umich.edu/publications/pubs.html (29th Apr 2007 @ 1:30 am) The history of Utopia : the chronology of nowhere, BOOK :Utopias- J.C.Davis

Literature Review: Crime free housing by POYNER, BARRY AND WEBB BARR A Great deal of attention has been given to neighborhood...
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