Field Studies in Real Estate, Planning, and Urban Design: Miami Beach and Boston

Saving Miami Beach from Climate-Change and Redeveloping Boston’s Columbia Point

The Field Study course is designed to provide students an understanding of the dynamics and complexities of reality that create contemporary urban physical environments. The course emphasizes the integration of design and development aspects of projects that respond to realistic market demand, political, financial and other regulatory constraints – how financial implications affect planning and design and vice versa.  It is intended for real estate professionals, architects, urban/landscape designers and planners, to broaden their understanding of urban development issues and public-private development problems, as well as to improve their skills in design and financial analysis.  This year there will be two field studies:

Saving Miami Beach from Climate Change
This field study will focus on preserving and redeveloping Miami Beach’s Flamingo Park District in light of expected sea level rise over the next two centuries.  Miami Beach includes some of the most noteworthy examples of Art Deco and other early and mid- 20th century buildings in danger of being lost.   The class will focus on master planning and redevelopment solutions for the southern end of Miami Beach during the first part of the course.  Students will select an area within the larger framework to produce detailed visions of preservation and redevelopment, taking into account the realities of the real estate marketplace, regulatory guidelines, and incorporating the latest construction and infrastructure solutions for living in an area with frequent storm surges.

Note, 10 students will be selected to participate in the Miami trip via the limited enrollment course lottery. Other enrolled students will participate in the Boston site. Miami students will be term billed up to $150 and are responsible for the cost of all meals and incidentals related to the trip, including any change fees related to modifications to set flight itinerary. Students participating in a traveling option studio are not eligible for the Miami site.

Redeveloping Boston’s Columbia Point
Adjacent to I-93 and the Red Line, this field study will focus on redeveloping the areas between the metro stop and UMass Boston, including access to the waterfront. Redevelopment requires solving vehicular and pedestrian access, dealing with a strong historic neighborhood, creating affordable housing, improving the waterfront, providing a public green and open space, and infrastructure adaptation to climate-change.   Redevelopment will focus on creating visions for a mixed-use, walkable neighborhood that recreates a stimulating and resilient urban community in an area that has seen many ups and downs..

This course exposes students to public and private development situations within

Schedule: This course will meet for the first time on Tuesday, August 30th at 6 PM in room 124. The meeting Tuesday night will last about an hour. The goal is to reconfirm who is in the Miami field study. Those who do not show up or email Professor Peiser their confirmation that they will take part in the Miami Beach field study will lose their place.  Everyone who is interested in the Miami Beach field study, especially those with close waitlist numbers, should attend. Also, students should be aware of the Zika virus and the dangers for anyone considering getting pregnant within the next 6 months. Miami trip takes place September 27- October 2.