Redevelopment Proposal

Assignment Purpose:

The purpose of this assignment is threefold:

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1) To further help develop your research and information-finding skills.

2) To explore in deep geographical analysis an issue in Toronto’s Geography

3) To examine a Toronto neighbourhood and how it might be improved by redevelopment

Assignment Technical Details:

Your assignment must be between 1800 and 2200 words (this is about 6-8 pages of double-spaced text). If you write more than 2200 words, I will stop reading and grade all that came before. Ensure you have room to include all the required sections listed below. Please put a word count at the end of your paper. In-text citations count towards your word limit but your works cited list does not. Please submit your assignment as a word file type to ensure I can read and add comments in-text.


This is a research assignment AND a creative assignment. You must include a minimum of 7 sources. These must include:

– Minimum 5 scholarly articles (peer reviewed – see the list of possible journals below)

– Minimum 2 ‘newspaper’ articles from credible sources (can be online)

– (Optional) non-scholarly online sources (including websites, blogs, short videos, etc.)

You may use course readings as materials (and I encourage you to do so!) but if you do they will not count towards your minimum number of sources. You are encouraged to also include maps, data, images, and illustrations. If you do, your paper will likely be beyond 6-8 pages and this is okay.

List of possible journals in which to find ‘scholarly’ articles:

Social & Cultural Geography

Gender, Place, & Culture

Cultural Geography

Urban Studies

Canadian Journal of Urban Research

Environment and Planning A

Environment and Planning C

Geography Review

The Canadian Geographer

Journal of the American Institute of Planners

Transportation Quarterly

Canadian Journal of Regional Science

Annals, Association of American Geographers


Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services

Journal of Urban Planning and Development

Journal of Urban Affairs

Housing Studies

International Journal of Urban and Regional Research

Urban Geography

Assignment Content Details:

In this assignment you will choose a Toronto (or GTA) neighbourhood and propose a redevelopment of that neighbourhood. You will research and write an 1800-2200 word Redevelopment Proposal.

Human Geography is the study of the relationship between people, place, and space. Your Redevelopment Proposal must be about a particular neighbourhood and through your discussion of proposed changes you should illustrate the integrative character of Geographical analysis. Consider the various aspects of Geography of Toronto (urban, social, cultural, political, economic, environmental, transportation) and examine how your topic and neighbourhood might be affected by each approach. Your Proposal should be grounded in the human experience of neighbourhoods.

You are tasked with a four-part objective:

1) Identification of neighbourhood (Approximately one page)

You should consider at what scale your proposed changes will occur. For instance, if you are proposing to redevelop the wealthy Toronto neighbourhood of Rosedale, will your proposed changes occur at a small, medium, or large scale? For instance, see the map below for three possible scales at which a student might redevelop Rosedale. Be sure to suggest the boundaries of your proposed changes, no matter the scale you choose.

You must offer a critical description of the current neighbourhood. You might consider including information about some or all of the below:

-Statistics and/or demographics

-Housing and/or commercial costs

-Built form and/or land use (residential, commercial, industrial, recreational, institutional, transportation)

-Relevant historical aspects of the neighbourhood

*Special note: Many students choose the neighbourhood Jane-Finch for this assignment. While it is a legitimate choice, Jeff has read SO MANY proposals about this neighbourhood! Please, if you can, choose another neighbourhood!

2) Discussion of the issue(s) your proposal aims to address (Approximately one to two pages). These might include some combination of the below:

-Housing type or prices



-Automobile issues

-Public transportation

-Cycling infrastructure

-Urban sprawl

-Community space

-Public housing

-Monoculture (Starbucks and condos everywhere)


-Natural environment

-Public safety

-Zoning/land use conflicts



-Food deserts

Some of the issues you discuss should be issues with the particular neighbourhood you have chosen, but you might also consider remedying issues with the city as a whole. In this section you should cite your research where relevant.

For instance, in the above example about Rosedale, that neighbourhood might not seem like an obvious neighbourhood to redevelop because it is wealthy, but it lacks affordable housing, as does the entire city! So, if you proposed an affordable housing redevelopment for the ‘fancy’ neighbourhood of Rosedale, you might expect to deal with housing type or prices, poverty, public housing, and NIMBYism (or others!).

3) Literature review (Approximately one to two pages)

You must conduct a scholarly review of some relevant literature that discusses the issues your proposal aims to address. Your sources should support your proposed changes. See above for minimum research requirements. I would like to see a mix of scholarly and non-scholarly source usage.

4) Proposed redevelopment changes (Approximately two to three pages)

What is your proposal? Here, you should lay out what you plan for the neighbourhood. There are many ways to do this and I encourage you to be creative! As long as your plan is within the realm of possibility, it will work for this assignment. I encourage you to dream. You might consider using images of your plans. Despite the room here for creativity, there are some things you should cover, including:

-Time frame for changes

-Plans for current residents/occupants (resettlement plans?)

-Transportation changes

-Infrastructure / built form changes (This is mandatory – you must propose physical changes!)

-Costs and funding

You might also consider some of the following:

-Creation of associations or already-existing associations (BIA, homeowner’s, renter’s association, etc.)

-What is changing and what is staying the same?

-How do deal with resistance to the proposal

In this section you must also explain how your plan addresses the issues you have suggested above in 2). You should cite your research here as well. Your plan must be grounded in the literature!

Works Cited List and Citations

You must include a works cited list in APA format and you should include citations where necessary. APA uses ‘author, date’ format (May, 2020).

The basics of what you need to do are simple! If you have read something written by Jeff May and want to cite his ideas, just include this at the end of your sentence (May, 2020). If your source has a specific page number and you have quoted directly, ‘cite with the page number included’ (May, 2020, p. 1).

For your works cited list, our course outline article references are in APA format. Just copy the format!

For further explanation of APA format, see the link below:

A Note about Academic Integrity

This assignment provides you with a lot of freedom in how to approach your topic. It also requires that you employ other people’s research (and words) in making your argument. Because of this freedom and requirement, it is the type of paper that provides the temptation to employ dubious citational practices! Please see the paragraph about Academic Integrity in the Course Outline and ensure you understand what honest practices mean in an essay context. This is your responsibility, but your instructor is willing to help you understand and learn

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