Residents’ Perception and Analysis of the Contemporary Neighbourhood Design Practices in Lahore, Pakistan
AbstractNeighbourhood design has been of special interest to the Planners and allied professionals since long. Review of the relevant literature revealed persistent debate on its size and design concepts. In the pursuit of designs for comfortable, safe and environment friendly living, the contemporary designers have presented various concepts. This paper first explores the most frequently suggested neighbourhood design features and develops a list of 21 design features locally considered as important to influence the perception of residents. It then analyzes the contemporary residential neighbourhood design practices in Lahore Pakistan using eight randomly selected neighbourhoods and questionnaire survey of nearly four hundred residents. The study finds that whilst a mix of gridiron and rectilinear patterns somewhat akin to traditional street design is in vogue in Lahore, a majority of residents is satisfied with many of the design features. However, there is a need to enhance the provisions for social interaction and safe movement of pedestrians. Further, consultations with all the stakeholders are necessary to develop a locally suitable neighbourhood design concept. Findings of this study also suggest that high level of satisfaction of the residents can be achieved more with meeting their expectations even by providing low density land sub-divisions. Consideration of prospective residents’ socio-economic background and nature of development in their areas of origin are more important than simply following the design features trumpeted in the literature as good neighbourhood designs.
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