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Settlement planning through linking people. A participatory approach of the Kitagata project in Japan

Mitsuhiko Hosaka

Journal article

The Kitagata Project was one of the pioneering cases of participatory settlement development in urban low-income communities in Japan. In recognition of the achievement, the Architectural Institute of Japan awarded a prize of honour to the City of Kitakyushu and an independent planning team, the Wakatake Planning Institute, in 1994. The points cited were: • efficiency in implementing an improvement project for a large-scale low-income settlement; • the role of planners as an intermediary between government and people, facilitating their partnership in the process of environmental upgrading; • innovative attempt for house design reflecting ‘a joy of living collectively’; and • organisation of a series of participatory activities in planning and implementation. However, the Project’s participatory approaches have not been documented much in the past.

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