The European Union prioritized gender mainstreaming in 1996 and funded sixty networked projects in efforts to develop gender analysis for urban planning (Horelli et al., 2000; Roberts, 2013). Policy makers and funders that make gender analysis a requirement for funding potentially provide a platform for integrating gender-specific criteria into housing and neighbourhood planning.
Housing and Neighborhood Design: Analyzing Gender In a Nutshell
Traditionally, cities have separated living and commercial spaces, resulting in large distances between home, daycare, shops, schools, and medical care. In such cities cars often become the preferred means of transportation, creating serious problems for the environment.
The gendered innovation in this case study is designing urban neighborhoods that integrate housing, childcare, elder care, shops for everyday needs, and basic medical care.
Vienna has been rated one of the cities with the "highest quality of living in the world." The image shows architect Franziska Ullmann's innovative urban neighborhood with 359 housing units (green).
1. Childcare facilities (orange) are built into the housing block to minimize the distance parents travel to daycare. This supports working parents and the environment by minimizing travel.
- 2. Basic shops (also orange) are built into the housing block. Daily needs can be met within the immediate vicinity of the apartment, further decreasing the need for transportation. This housing block also includes a doctor’s office.
- 3. Cantilevered windows allow parents to watch children playing outdoors. These windows are also featured in apartments for the elderly so that they can enjoy community life.
A second project, also in Vienna, considers urban design across the life course—or across generations. The housing complex is designed to contain different of types of apartments—some for the very young who are just starting out, others for families, and others for the elderly. By incorporating different apartments at different cost points in a single complex, families have the option of having elderly parents living in the same building but not in their own apartments.