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Tactical Urbanism

This week we will be looking at how people are working to act locally to reclaim public space to address community needs and bring light to broader social issues in the process through the concept of Tactical Urbanism. After laying down a basic definition of what this term refers to as well as its broader implications for themes like city planning, market incentives, and civic engagement, we will use two examples to outline this concept. We will watch Ron Finley’s and Majora Carter’s Ted Talks (link below) and discuss their implications for many of the themes we have discussed in class.


Published inUrbanization


  1. Nina K

    Arguably one of the most important parts of tactical urbanism is community involvement. The focus is not just to revamp the community but to get people involved in reclaiming their neighborhood. It makes people feel connected to their space. As Ron Finely discussed, what he really dreams of is changing his neighborhood and putting kids on a better path. It’s more important to him that people are involved and putting effort into their community, so that everything they get out they really can appreciate. Well, he says, the produce may come without cost it’s not free, the people need to put labor and love into their community to get what they need out of it.

  2. Diana Uribe

    The assigned readings given to my group this week were “The Official Guide to Tactical Urbanism” by Nate Berg and “Stop Thinking Big” by Will Doig. Both articles focused on locally planned tactics who’s purpose is to improve the urban environments. “Stop Thinking Big” uses examples that encourage people to take public places and transform them into spaces for people. To think local, small even and try to better a community. Nate Berg writes to educate readers on a number of events that could occur in your neighborhoods. The idea is to get the people of the community involved, and find which events work best to improve the community. The Street Plans Collaborative made a free-for-download guidebook that gives people ideas and information on how to bring these events to their neighborhoods. Berg wrote, “a key element of the guidebook: making things work… to make something – even something temporary – that will change how a place works and is perceived”. (Berg, pg. 3) These articles were insightful eye openers to how I can better a neighborhood.

  3. Rebecca Chamblee

    Ron Finley is a really cool dude. He grew In a poor neighborhood in Los Angeles without much fresh food, but he was able to turn that around. He started planting food in between the sidewalk and the street for anyone to be able to take. This gave families who could not afford fresh food access to fruits and vegetables. Finley is able to bring his community together and combat child hunger and obesity all at one time. And he is able to do it all behind the rallying cries of “if you ain’t a gardener you ain’t gangster” and “plant some shit!”. He proves activists can still get diggy (haha) with the youths.

  4. Taylor Couty

    In Majora Carter’s Ted Talk, “Greening the Ghetto” she uses Bogota as an example, stating that it was “poor, Latino” and had lots of gun violence and drug trafficking. Although, in the 1990’s the city took on a new mayor, Enrique Peñalosa, who transformed the city. He made change by first looking at all of the information, such as demographics. He made major changes, such as new public plazas, extended pedestrian walkways and bike lanes, and a new buss transit system. Although, at first, the people that inhabited the city were quite shaken, almost coming to the conclusion that he needed to be impeached. As time went by, the citizens started to take notice of his changes that were positively impacting their lives. The citizens started coming to gather to better take care of their city, such as ceasing littering. On top of that, crimes in the city were becoming less and less. Peñalosa took the budget of a third-world country to solve multiple urban problems, setting a great example of putting the city first. No city should have any excuses, he was a great example of taking what you have and making the most with it.

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