Growth and Structure of Cities (Bryn Mawr)

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    Pastoral Fantasies, Urban Realities: A Study of Campus Expansions at New York City Universities
    (2023) Gonen, Deniz; McDonogh, Gary W.
    The college campus is a uniquely American place. Often designed in the style of neoclassical academic and residential buildings surrounding green quads that are meant to emulate a sense of peace and admiration from its students, it was largely considered a “pastoral retreat” for elite young men until the later half of the 20th century. When both city and university space began to expand greatly, universities had to grapple with the reality of being located in urban centers and became “total worlds” to their students by sheltering them in a closed campus environment. This thesis looks at Columbia University and New York University (NYU), both located in New York City, to understand how university expansion projects lead to emulating a secluded campus within an already thriving urban framework. These institutions are contrasted to the City College of New York, part of the city’s main public university system, which has historically served more local populations and preserves a certain degree of openness within its campus. Ultimately, these university expansions show the desire to control land at the expense of usable public city space, and the resulting prestige attached to creating a cohesive campus image. The possibility of forming a college without a campus is explored in the conclusion as a way of imagining higher education in a more community-oriented and inclusive way.
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    Practices of Social Regulation and Informal Formalization: A Case Study of America’s Homeless Encampments
    (2023) Martin, Erin; Restrepo, Lauren Hansen
    Using prior literature on homeless encampments as well as applying scholarship on informal settlements in the Global South, this thesis explores the factors that have allowed homeless encampments to endure over the course of decades and examines the formalization processes, both official and unofficial, of these encampments. In addition, this paper studies the formalization of homeless encampments, physically -- evolving from temporary, informal campsites to formal settlements with permanent structures – as well as socially and politically, as the homeless encampment residents form communities, establish forms of self-governance and gain political support and power. Furthermore, this paper examines how these homelessness encampments are shaped by the local political and social environment.
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    The Historical Impact of Cape Cod Economy and Identity on Modern-Day Wastewater Management
    (2022) Donahue, Matthew; McDonogh, Gary W.
    Cape Cod is a peninsular world defined by the ocean, a vital resource that has been a lifeline for peoples of the Cape since its first inhabitants in the Late Archaic Period. Despite this dependence, however, Cape Cod and its waters have had a tenuous relationship, defiled by overuse and neglect. This abuse has taken different forms throughout history. Early European settlers practiced fishing, shipbuilding, and desalination, initially bountiful until mechanization and overuse led to an ecological collapse in the late nineteenth century which ultimately necessitated a transformation of the region's identity. The Cape Cod of today, a quaint resort town defined by summer homes and resorts, faces a new, less visible crisis. Buried beneath summer homes and sprawling ocean-side estates, over 85% of Cape properties use on-site septic systems, technology that has been shown to be ineffective at removing nitrates and other organic pollutants from runoff water. This imperceptible foe poses a massive threat to a delicate ecosystem and could threaten the integrity of the sole thing that has historically defined Cape Cod: its oceans. This paper aims to explore how the late 19th century shift from a goods to a tourism-based economy impacted modern-day sewage treatment methods on Cape Cod.
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    Redefining Boundaries: A Design Proposal for a Migrant Worker Communal Housing Plan in Al Quoz, Dubai, UAE
    (2022) Singh, Shreya; McDonogh, Gary W.
    Being born and brought up in the UAE, I had the privilege of watching Dubai transform from a desert port into a thriving metropolis with the third-most skyscrapers in the world. With the increased demand for migrant workforce due to large projects like Expo 2020, the UAE and the rest of the Gulf are going through a transformation that could affect their migrant workers. Since 2014, about 34,000 laborers have died in the Gulf due to exploitative working and living conditions. I believe it is crucial to evaluate the impact of design, and for this thesis, I am proposing a redesign of the UAE's migrant worker housing to provide more humane housing conditions for the low-income, diasporic migrant worker population living in the UAE. The current 'labor camps' in the UAE are extremely overcrowded and lack basic amenities. The design solution aims to meet the needs of the migrant workers in the effort to provide humane living conditions. I will propose a portable, sustainable, and flexible communal housing model that will serve the current migrant workers and possibly their families in the future. The site will include integrated introverted-extroverted spaces, which will be built up of modular typologies that can change over time as demographics and needs change. The spatial arrangement of the building typologies with mixed functions could contribute to the social and cultural integration of the migrants in various ways.
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    (2021) Hager, Madeleine Park; McDonogh, Gary W.
    Planning for East Parkside studies the history of exclusion, neglect and disconnect in the Philadelphia neighborhood of East Parkside and explores how its history shapes contemporary development. An analysis of three recent development plans for the district within which the neighborhood lies demonstrates how East Parkside is often planned for in the context of its large neighboring institutions, including the Philadelphia Zoo, the Please Touch Museum, the Mann, and Fairmount Park as a whole, which reflects and results in the prioritization of these institutions over East Parkside in a way that contributes to further disconnect and isolation. As a result, the very institutions that might serve as amenities to a community end up working against it. However, throughout its history, individualsand communities have created meaningful change through their neighborhood focused work, and it is through this block-by-block method that residents and organization of East Parkside continue to positively impact their community.