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Downtown Plans of the 1980s - The Case for More Equity in the 1990s
Journal of the American Planning Association
  • W. Dennis Keating, Cleveland State University
  • Norman Krumholz, Cleveland State University
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During the past decade, many American cities completed downtown plans; six such representative plans are analyzed here, in accordance with established criteria for the development of comprehensive, long-range plans. (The cities under review here are Cleveland, Denver, Philadelphia, Portland, San Francisco, and Seattle.) The major concern of this critique is whether downtown planning has effectively come to terms with the issue of social equity. Traditionally, plans for the central business districts (CBDs) of American cities have addressed land use, physical development, infrastructure, and fiscal concerns. However, to be genuinely effective, downtown plans must also address the more general social problems of central cities and their neighborhoods. CBDs cannot become islands unto themselves, insulated and isolated from the social ills that influence central cities as a whole and that must be confronted by urban planners. Toronto's Cityplan 1991, which updates Toronto's 1976 Central Area Plan, is highlighted as a model for downtown planning, with its identification of social equity as a guiding principle for all policy discussions concerning basic urban rights.
Citation Information
Keating, W. D., & Krumholz, N. (March 01, 1991). Downtown plans of the 1980s. Journal of the American Planning Association, 57, 2, 136-152.