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The aim of this exercise was to teach students how to critically analyze the formal, social and logistical attributes of urban neighborhoods, using a variety of methods. Starting from a purely experiential mode of analysis, students moved towards increasingly research-based and data collection-oriented strategies, with the final aim of proposing improvements to the existing neighborhood. The neighborhood of Les Halles in central Paris functioned as a case study for analyzing, quantifying and proposing urban improvements.

Student teams analyzed 10 aspects of the neighborhood and recommended improvements based on qualitative and quantitative analysis:

    1. Circulation and Wayfinding
    2. Advertising, Public Art and Signage
    3. Street Furniture
    4. Architecture and Massing
    5. Public Space / Open Space
    6. Trash
    7. Toilets
    8. Smart Infrastructure
    9. User Activity
    10. Retail

The exercise was undertaken by the Summer Program in 2015; you can here see their findings here.