City Aesthetic: How Decor, Landscape, and Layout Play a Role in Citizen Retention


City planning can be a jumble of needs that range from walkability and sustainability to good overall neighborhood structure. A common goal, however, is citizen retention. Here are just a few things to consider to create a city where people want to stay.


Decor can be one of the most interesting parts of urban planning, especially if your city is known for a particular “vibe” or “culture.” However, you’ll want to think about more than just appearances as you build your blueprints. Eco-friendliness should be considered in everything from materials to structural layouts, and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) should be calculated for all new buildings to see how they’ll impact their surrounding environment. You might also think about the use of things like color psychology in your city design. It’s a creative science that can be used for traffic calming and other forms of stress reduction for your residents.


Aesthetics aren’t the only things that matter about a landscape. Your greenery, for example, can impact your overall air quality; certain plants are better than others at stripping volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the surrounding environment. It can also matter when and where you plant trees. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, tree shading can reduce nearby temperatures by 6°F, and it isn’t just because they’re blocking out the sun. They also encourage evapotranspiration through their water vapor. This can have a big impact on your city landscape and the comfort of its citizens in hot, heavily-trafficked areas.


Speaking of traffic, you’ll definitely want to collaborate with architects and engineers in terms of optimal city planning. While traditional, grid-based road systems might work for some locations, they might be a hindrance in others, especially those that want to facilitate pedestrian movement. You should also plan your city layout with growth in mind. What works today might be too cramped and confining for a larger population in a few years, and that strain will be felt in more than just crowded streets. If you haven’t laid down pavement surface coatings, for example, your asphalt and concrete might not have a lot of longevity, necessitating costly repairs.

These are just a few things to consider in urban planning that can have a positive impact on residents’ quality of life. If you want to increase citizen retention rates, you’ll need to make your city a place where people can live, work, and raise families with a high happiness index. It all starts with city design.

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