The birth of 'land use planning' in American urban planning

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Although the concept of 'land use planning' is now firmly enmeshed in American urban planning, its meaning still remains vague. This paper aims to clarify the meaning by examining the historical development of land use planning in the USA. At the beginning of the twentieth century, city planners viewed a city as an organic unit of public facilities. While city planning thereafter provided potential elements of land use planning, such as zoning, zoning surveys and land use classification systems, the idea of land use planning itself was actually derived from rural county planning and was initially utilized in urban county planning as a guide for zoning in the 1930s. After bringing about a change in the way cities were viewed, that is, as a pattern of land use and population density, land use planning was further employed as a guide for urban redevelopment policies in the 1940s, and finally reaching full integration into city planning in the 1950s and 1960s.

Keywords: Hugh R. Pomeroy; land use planning; land use survey; land utilization; zoning survey

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Urban and Environmental Engineering, Kyushu University, Moto-Oka, Nishi-Ku, Fukuoka-Shi, Fukuoka-Ken, Japan

Publication date: October 1, 2009

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