The Community Planning and Visualization Lab collaborates with several courses offered by the Department of Geography, Planning, and Sustainability at Rowan University. The lab conceptualizes and develops student-driven real-world planning and visualization projects through innovative partnerships with local governments and other organizations. If you have a potential “planning” or GIS project that could be used as a class project or a studio, please feel free to contact us.


PLAN 31486: Community Planning & Site Design (offered in spring semester)

This course focuses on the design, arrangement, appearance, and functionality of building sites, neighborhoods, towns and cities, as well as the shaping and uses of safe public spaces. It introduces sustainable design principles, techniques, and practices related to urban design and green infrastructure. It provides an overview of factors involved in community design process and the tools available to planners and urban designers to effectuate the implementation of community vision. Students examine the many elements that contribute to the aesthetic and human quality of urban communities by analyzing the nature of buildings, materials, public spaces, streetscapes, landscapes, foodscapes, water, time, light, scale, and other factors related to the urban environment. Students explore design elements at both the macro and micro scales that make up both the public and private realms of the built environments of sustainable communities and learn to express those elements in workable urban design plans and implementation tools such as Zoning and Form Based Codes. The course is both theoretical as well as applied providing experience in developing plans and designs in a studio setting.

Edelman Fossil Park Site Plan by Cassie Shugart, Christina Chinnici, Meagan Schaefer, & Molly Jacoby

GEOG 16316: Geovisualization (offered in fall semester)

This course explores geographic visualization (Geovisualization) and related cartographic and graphic design techniques. The course content is primarily focused on GIS-based spatial planning, design, analysis, and visualization techniques, and is relevant to urban/regional planning, community development, and related professions. Coursework is based on 2D and 3D data analysis and modeling, fly-thru, visualization, presentations, and spatial planning/design, using software such as ArcGIS, ArcGIS Online, ArcGIS extensions (e.g, Spatial Analyst and 3D Analyst), Google Earth, Google SketchUp, Adobe CC Illustrator, and online publishing platform (e.g., WordPress). Students learn to present spatial data, analysis, and design through maps, apps, infographics, posters, sketches, reports, slides, and websites. The concepts of qualitative Geovisualization and other emerging tools and techniques are also introduced. Students are also exposed to the basic knowledge of using GIS and Geovisualization in site analysis, site design, public participatory GIS (PPGIS), and design charrettes. Students are expected to take a follow-up course titled Community Planning & Site Design in spring 2017.