How to Generate a Thousand Master Plans:
A Framework for Computational Urban Design
SIMAUD 2019 (Georgia Tech)
The current process for the design of an urban master plan typically involves a team of architects and urban planners that conceive a handful of schemes based on zoning requirements with the help of CAD software. They may intend for the plan to achieve a set of performance goals (economic, environmental, etc.), but quantitative analysis is rarely conducted early and consistently through the design process. This makes it difficult to understand the full range of approaches that are possible on a site, and the relative performance of each scheme.
To best accommodate rapid urbanization while making cities more sustainable, livable, and equitable, designers must use quantitative tools to make informed decisions about their designs.
Computational design techniques have been successfully used at the building scale to test numerous designs and quantify their performance. But they are challenging to apply at the urban scale due to increased computational expense, difficulty in limiting inputs, and many stakeholders involved in the process.