This article examines a strategy called responsive participatory redesign (RPR): in it, ordinary citizens attempt to pro-actively correct defects in existing spatial arrangements that contribute to problems such as neighborhood crime. This approach offers important advantages over more top-down strategies of community-friendly design such as those of the “New Urbanism” such as its capacity to manage unintended consequences, draw direct citizen engagement, and economize on the resources available for public problem solving. Recent developments under the rubric of Chicago’s Alternative Policing Strategy (CAPS) have unintentionally created some of the building blocks of RPR, and several early experiences illustrate the modest contributions to the quality of neighborhood life that this public policy approach can yield.
Beyond and Below the New Urbanism: Citizen Participation and Responsive Spatial Reconstruction,
B.C. Envtl. Aff. L. Rev.