A typological approach to planning

Authors: Kai Gu, Ye Li, Xi Zheng


Journal of Urbanism: International Research on Placemaking and Urban Sustainability
Volume 12, Issue 4 | 18 June 2019



The concept of typological processes has been used to study the course of urban form change. Despite increasing research interest in its theory and practice, it has been slow to receive clear empirical support and its application in planning remains limited. Major cities in New Zealand are under great pressure for change. This paper illustrates a typological investigation of the spatial structure of urban areas in Auckland. It reveals that the forms created in one period are different from those created in another. Stratified over time, similar types thereby generate distinct urban tissues. Traditionally, the dominant urban-tissue types in a new period of urban development are conceived from the dominant types of an earlier period. The research findings are used to support an alternative planning strategy that aims to achieve built environments that can adapt to changing demands in the future whilst retaining much-valued established character.