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Transit-Oriented Development for UTA


The transit-oriented development approach means that the urban environment is designed based on the places of actions where people realize themselves: work, play, study, eat, or rest. Physical parameters of the building – building height, the number of rooms, street orientation, passage planning – are developed depending on those places of action and connections between them. This approach is beneficial as it allows the creation of comfortable and useful spaces for people.

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New Urbanism

New urbanism is, actually, the realization of the transit-oriented approach. It consists of two main qualities: interconnectivity and people-oriented design. The former means that all places of action, designed in the building, are interconnected, and people can quickly transfer between them. The latter means that those places are created by people and people: their efficiency and convenience are the main issues for their design. Ten principles of design, which will be described on the next slide, show how one may create such a design.

Rams Ten Principles of Design

Thus, Rams’ ten principles of design show which design is better. They are the next:

  1. Innovativeness.
  2. Usefulness.
  3. Aesthetic.
  4. Understandable.
  5. Unobtrusiveness.
  6. Honesty.
  7. Long-lasting.
  8. Thorough down to the last detail.
  9. Environmentally friendliness.
  10. Involving as little design as possible.

While all of them must be considered when designing a building, not all of those principles are relevant in the case of the UTA School of Social Work. The building should not necessarily involve as few details as possible: it would apply, for example, to a museum, not to the educational institution. In that way, some of these principles are more actual than others.

Their Application for the UTA School

Four out of ten principles are especially relevant to the UTA School of Social Work case.

Usefulness includes the design of the classroom, open spaces, and laboratories that are comfortable and useful for the student’s work and study.

Unobtrusiveness means that all of them should be designed to be comfortable for students and not disturb their work.

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Long-lasting and environmental friendliness are essential for educational institutions. Environmental friendliness will make them more comfortable for students, and long-lasting will serve many generations of them.

The Public Infrastructure

The school’s infrastructure consists of classrooms, research labs, dining rooms, libraries, other spaces, and a public park. Additional areas include rooms for rest, play, and extracurricular studying; also, students may work on their projects there. A public park is a place for walking and studying outside.

A Precedent Study

A precedent study examines designs similar to the ones that should be created. In this case, such examples will be other Schools of Social Work in various universities. They have designs based on their facilities: one may explore the School at Arizona State University. Their strategic plan includes facilities such as the community for regular curriculum review, a classroom for students, and a stakeholder team, which helps students conduct their research. They formulate the basis for the development of the public infrastructure of the School of Social Work: the complex of buildings and rooms where all those facilities are realized in a way that is the most comfortable for students, researchers, and teaching personnel.

The Plan of the UTA Site for the School

Here is the UTA School of Social Work architecture design plan: it is based on the principles described above and is designed to be the most comfortable for the study, work, and research of students and personnel.


To conclude, one may review the application of the transit-oriented building design for the construction of the UTA School of Social Work. It means examining the facilities necessary for the School; then, the building is designed based on those facilities, to realize them for those who will work and study there.


Domingo, Muriel Garreta. “Dieter Rams: 10 Timeless Commandments for Good Design.” The Interaction Design Foundation, 2020.

Steiner, Frederick. Making Plans: How to Engage With Landscape, Design, and the Urban Environment. Illustrated, University of Texas Press, 2018.

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“Strategic Plan.” School of Social Work, 2021. Web.

World Bank Group. “Transforming the Urban Space Through Transit-Oriented Development: The 3V Approach.” World Bank, 2017.

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