Town Planning Review

Centenary paper: Urban planning in Southeast Asia: perspective from Singapore

Town Planning Review (2011), 82, (2), 145–168.

Abstract

Southeast Asia is one of the world's fastest-growing regions in terms of population and urban growth. The economic and physical landscapes of its cities continue to change with globalisation and transnationalism, requiring update and development of new urban and spatial practices. The aim of this paper is to reflect and review the state of urban planning and policy in Southeast Asia, focusing in particular on the roots of urban planning from European colonial planning, their inherent ideas and principles. Using the case study of Singapore, the intention is to drill down and examine the products of the first modernity represented by British colonial modernist planning, and discuss how largely Eurocentric planning models have shaped and impacted on the present urban structure and development, and are intersecting with the second wave of modernity brought on by globalisation and the new economic growth of the twenty-first century, especially in terms of addressing urban liveability and sustainability.

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Yuen, Belinda