Urban Planning Timeline


Neolithic Era

Approx. 10,000 BCE - Approx. 3,000 BCE
  • Stone tools were created. Permanent settlement around agriculture and domesticated animals

Pre-Classical or Epic Age

Approx. 1000 BC - Approx. 500 AC
  • Earliest known examples of deliberately planned and managed cities.
  • Grid pattern was introduced, with a hierarchy of streets from major boulevards to residential alleys
  • Water systems were created

Classical and Medieval Europe

Approx. 401 - Approx. 1300
  • Characteristically focused on a fortress, a fortified abbey, when planned for military purposes, with organic growth focused on walking around.

Renaissance Europe

Approx. 1300 - Approx. 1600
  • City inside fortified walls were still a focus, however cities no longer grew organically, radial streets extend outward from a defined centre of military, communal or spiritual power.

Enlightenment Europe/ Baroque Planning/ 19th Century Industrialization

1650 - Approx. 1890
  • Rulers often embarked on ambitious attempts at redesigning their capital cities as a showpiece, but disasters were often a major catalyst for planned reconstruction. This stimulated thinking about urban design that influenced city planning in North America. Pedsheds were the focus of planning, easy access to walking and intermodal transportation transfers. Baroque planning was the opposite of organic planning

City Beautiful

1893 - 1910
  • City Beautiful aimed to build large structures to attract more tourist. Also, The City Beautiful Movement, lead by the middle and upper classes, was meant to deal with these rising issues of sanitation, crime, and over-population of cities.

Garden City

1905 - 1940
  • City Beautiful aimed to build large structures to attract more tourist Garden City aimed to divide cities into sections, and zoning. Garden cities are also known as Satellite Cities.

Radiant City

Approx. 1940 - Approx. 1970
  • During this period the US was recovering from the Great Depression. The Radiant City aimed for efficiency, by having all population needs in large buildings while leaving everything else green, this included large residencial buildings as well.

Greenbelts and City of Highways

Approx. 1945 - 2016
  • This is also called the Postwar Consumer Society Era, when many families moved further away from city centers, in a very prolific economic period. The 20th century industrialization made it affordable for families to buy large houses and cars. Forcing cities to build bigger and longes highways.

LBJ's Great Society and 1970s Environmentalism

1965 - 1980
  • With the passing of both the The 1964 Urban Mass Transportation Act and the Housing and Urban Development Act, a more centralized movement started to rebuild large urban areas for the population needs.

  • By the 70s, cities started to implement tougher zoning laws and water and air pollution maanagement

Post Modern, Gobalization and Sustrainability

Approx. 1975 - 2016
  • Cities aiming to decrease "sprawling" and consume in America, by adopting more sustainable and integrated urban systems, that utilizes less energy.