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The Help-Yourself City – Legitimacy and Inequality in DIY Urbanism - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Help-Yourself City: Legitimacy and Inequality in DIY Urbanism

Gordon C.C. Douglas


When cash-strapped local governments don’t provide adequate services, and planning policies prioritize economic development over community needs, what is a concerned citizen to do? In the help-yourself city, you do it yourself. The Help-Yourself City presents the results of nearly five years of in-depth research on people who take urban planning into their own hands with unauthorized yet functional and civic-minded “do-it-yourself urban design” projects. Examples include homemade traffic signs and public benches, guerrilla gardens and bike lanes, even citizen development “proposals,” all creat ... More

Keywords: DIY urbanism, do-it-yourself, tactical urbanism, creative placemaking, aesthetics, inequality, privilege, legitimacy, urban design, urban planning

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2018 Print ISBN-13: 9780190691332
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2018 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190691332.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Gordon C.C. Douglas, author
Assistant Professor of Urban Planning and Director of the Institute for Metropolitan Studies, San José State University