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Texca University: Department of Urban Planning and Design - Lecture 1 - Breaks

Great Kingdom of

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As a great institution of learning and culture throughout our history, Texca University continues to be the leader in prestige and education throughout the Simworld. Today, the university proudly presents to the public a new lecture series from the College of Urban Planning and Design.

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Welcome to the Texca University Public University Lectures Series. We hope this program will bring insight to your mind and some new learning of things or places not before thought of.

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In our lovely campus we have several colleges. This series will be led by the College of Urban Planning and Design. Enjoy!

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Welcome to Lecture 1 of the Urban Planning and Design department.

We have several lectures that will be coming from this department. Today's lecture will focus on the urban design phenomenon known as Breaks.

The following lectures will available in the coming weeks:

1. Breaks

2. Nodes

3. Edges

4. Urban Renewal

5. Urban Sprawl

Once past these lectures, more will be posted. Lets begin!

​We will first begin with defining what a Break is. You have seen these breaks everywhere in your maps, many times. As city enthusiasts, we study the city, we define the city, we design the city. In this design, we have a certain grid pattern. In Downtown Texca Hills, the pattern looks like this:

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This pattern is typically known as Gridiron or Grid, as it's commonly called. The grid pattern is very square and whether facing north-south or north-west to south-east, the pattern is always in a box like shape. There are curves and cuts here and there, but most of the pattern is similar.

How do we identify a break? A Break occurs wherever any street pattern is broken and the grid or any other pattern changes dramatically, as done by Avenue of the Hills:

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Avenue of the Hills acts as a break in downtown. South of the street, the pattern is north-south. When those streets reach Avenue of the Hills, the grid pattern changes to east-west. Remember, in order for a street to be a break, the entire pattern must change, not just one street's change.

So on this map, here is an example of what is not a break:

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Crossfields Blvd is a diagonal street that cuts through downtown but is not a break. With the exception of one street, Crossfields does not "break" the street pattern, neither does the grid change dramatically. Even if the street is diagonal, it can still be a break, but not in this case.

As you continue to design your cities, keep in mind this natural phenomenon. It is not just designed. Breaks are usually in place where a town began to grow dramatically and altered its course. Most cities began along shores, but when they grew inland, breaks began to occur to accommodate for this growth.

Take a look at any city maps, and you will find breaks. Can you spot the many breaks in the Central Quadrant?

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Thats all for breaks! We hope you learned something valuable in urban design today. Reply with examples of breaks from your cities, as proof of your Break awareness. See you next lecture. Class dismissed!

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