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Neighbourhoods as comprehensive residential systems have existed throughout history and their physical traces can be found in ancient cities (Morris 1979; Madanipour 1994). The lecture by Ali Madanipour focused on different principles of Neighbourhood design, Origins of the idea, Garden cities, New Towns, New urbanism, Future of the idea.


‘Everyone has neighbours, even the people in the Australian outback whose neighbours may be fifty miles away’ (Mann 1970).



To design a liveable neighbourhood we have different design principles such as good link to all the transport infrastructure, clear centres and focal points, direct link to town centres, well designed open public spaces, high network of streets and mixed use of space.


It took three generations to shape the 20th century. Earlier generation was involved in anti-urbanism and created suburban areas. After that people started creating large cities which led to urbanism. And in the last micro-urbanism was developed which led to garden cities, new town, new urbanism, urban village and eco-towns. There was a need of ideal cities which led to the origin of these new towns.


These images show the poor living conditions of the villages during earlier generations.












In the 19th century, due to industrialization cities became polluted, crowded and unhealthy place. Howards then puts the idea of the garden cities which he showed with his three magnets of town, country and town-country. Most of the European cities started using the principles of town country magnet as it attracted most of the people.




Ali mentions that’s after the World War II there were development of the new towns. The first generation (1946-1950) towns had small population, balanced and self-contained areas, suburban character, limited mobility, neighbourhood units, and cul-de-sacs.

Image shows the East Kilbride in Scotland which was the town in first generation.


In 1960s the second generation town were larger, more mobile, and more modern than before. Washington had more car based development during that period.


New urbanism was based on Traditional Neighbourhood Development (TND) and Transit Oriented Development (TOD).

The centre of each neighbourhood should be defined by a public space and activated by locally oriented civic and commercial facilities. Each neighbourhood should accommodate a range of household types and land uses. Cars should be kept in perspective. Architecture should respond to the surrounding buildings and spaces and to local traditions.




These planning techniques are being taken into consideration to develop new ideal cities. One of the example is the Tianfu New District, which is the new garden city in China. Because of the fact that Chinese cities are highly dense with pollution and poor health so the government is taking different measures to develop sustainable cities.


1.     Madanipour, A. (2016). Design of Neighbourhoods, [Lecture]

2.     Ames, D., Taking Letchworth to Chengdu: can garden cities work in China? Available at:

3.     Howard, E., Author’s Introduction and The Town-Country Magnet, in The City Reader.

4.     Collinson, R. (2017). What is neighbourhood planning?. [online] Available at: [Accessed 20 Jan. 2017].


School of Architecture
Planning and Landscape
Newcastle upon Tyne
Tyne and Wear, NE1 7RU

Tel: 0191 208 6509


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