The Experience on the Decision-making Process of Urban Design Projects
Article Type:
Research/Original Article (دارای رتبه معتبر)
In recent years, a significant number of urban design projects have been developed for the public spaces in Tehran aimed to create the optimal "quality" in urban environments. Despite the utilization of the urban design approach in the procurement process, lack of quality and non-realization (implementation) of these projects are considered as challenges of the urban management. The present study seeks to identify the obstacles to the realization of an optimal urban design by utilizing the experiences of Tehran municipality managers in the decision-making process of urban design projects. The method of this research is qualitative, based on "grounded theory" in data analysis, and theorizing. The study data were collected using semi-structured interviews with 25 managers of urbanism and architecture departments and technical managers of the consulting engineers. Sampling was continued until the theoretical saturation. For data collection, we have also used the written sources of projects implemented in recent years of the municipality of Tehran. The results of this study show that managers in the decision-making process have experienced lack of a durable and recognizable management strategy for preparation of urban design projects. This will lead to the unresolved urban problems, loss of the quality of the urban environment, social dissatisfaction, loss of spent financial resources, weakening power of consulting engineers, and expansion of non-transparent power relations between beneficiaries and stakeholders' groups. It seems that institutionalizing the urban design can respond to this challenge. Summarizing the opinion of the interviewees on their experience of decision-making of urban design projects shows that lack of a durable management strategy has been considered as the most challenging issue for urban design projects in Iran, and has seriously damaged project realization. One of the mechanisms for responding to this challenge is to use "new institutional theory" in order to institutionalize urban design knowledge at the level of public and governmental organizations meeting. In this case, urban design is demanded as a social behavior and obvious act in the body of society and at various public, private and governmental levels, seeking to promote the quality of the environment. Formation of its urban design institution as the controller and determiner of the behaviors of various actors can pave the way for higher realizing of urban design. This can be achieved through definition of social entity of urban design at the knowledge level, attitudes and learning to be with people, being process-focused, and ultimately conversion to behavior and norm at the level of public, private and governmental institutions. Moreover, considering the findings of this study, as the result of the interaction of the consequences of lack of a management strategy and lack of a place of urban design in the institutional approach, the actions carried out in the form of urban design projects in Iran can only operate at the level of informal expression of the design governance toolkit. Thus, it has not yet been as official tools in urban planning and urban management system.
Journal of Architecture and Urban Planning, Volume:12 Issue: 25, 2020
63 to 84  
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