The Community Planning and Visualization Lab explores the connections between social, natural, and built environments and how they influence the process of planning for healthy, resilient, and equitable communities, with a focus on land, water, and food.
Using a sustainability lens, we examine how the nexus of land, water, and food play a role in spatial planning and community planning. In particular, we are interested in the ways community resilience is influenced by spatial distributions and prioritization processes of green and blue infrastructure (e.g., green stormwater management projects, parks, greenways, community gardens, urban farms) at the neighborhood, urban, and regional scales. We use “spatial planning models” that integrate ecological and socioeconomic indicators and consider triple bottom line community benefits (e.g., social, environmental, and economic benefits).
We apply an innovative combination of participatory planning tools and geospatial or other digital technologies in spatial planning, community engagement, and community capacity building efforts, with a specific focus on participatory and mixed-methods approaches with GIS, geodesign, and geo-visualization.
We recognize that many planning processes and outputs may misunderstand important aspects of human and social experiences. Planners overwhelmingly have concentrated on issues around physical health – not mental and emotional health, as well as spiritual well being. We seek to assess and understand how human emotions are attached to social, natural, and built environments and how such attachment may influence the process of planning for happy cities and neighborhoods.
Urban food environment, food insecurity, and community development
Green infrastructure, environmental health, climate resiliency, and social equity
Sustainable development, land use scenarios, and neighborhood revitalization
Public participation, participatory/emotional mapping, digital civic engagement, and smart cities
Mahbubur R. Meenar, PhD, GISP
Assistant Professor, Geography, Planning, and Sustainability
School of Earth and Environment
201 Mullica Hill Rd, Glassboro, NJ 08028