The Charrette Handbook

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Product Code: NCI-BOOK1


The Charrette Handbook

National Charrette Institute — Bill Lennertz and Aarin Lutzenhiser

Foreword by Andres Duany
188 pages, American Planning Association Publishing, 2006

“No planning library should be without this book. It provides an outline of all the tools necessary to hold a successful charrette.”

Rick Bernhardt, FAICP
Executive Director
Metropolitan Nashville-Davidson
County Planning Department

A complete desktop reference for professional planners and community members alike

To have a great plan, you need a great process.

The Charrette Handbook is the first comprehensive step-by-step guide for how to plan and hold a successful charrette. Based on the NCI Charrette Certificate Program curriculum developed by the National Charrette Institute, the book offers practical tips on everything from pre-charrette preparations to project implementation. With handy charts and easy-to-follow examples, the handbook is an invaluable how-to manual for anyone organizing a charrette.

The Charrette Handbook will show you how to:

  • Cut months out of your planning process
  • Reduce costly project rework by involving key people in short feedback loops
  • Involve a broad range of stakeholders without any one interest or person taking over
  • Produce innovative and feasible designs using a complete team approach
  • Gain broad stakeholder support for your project
  • Avoid post-charrette meltdowns

Other highlights include the first history of charrettes and tips and stories from the field by 25 leading charrette practitioners including:

  • Gianni Longo on how to assure a proportional demographic representation
  • Peter Katz on charrettes, urban design and form-based codes
  • Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk on strategic actions and implementation
  • Victor Dover on using pictures instead of words
  • Harrison B. Rue on “facilitator training”
  • Dan Burden on “walking audits”
  • Douglas Kelbaugh on student/academic charrettes
  • Peter Musty on twelve typical charrette website elements
  • Steve Coyle on the OSM process
  • Bruce Race on a youthful perspective

Note: The Charrette Handbook refers to the three phases of the NCI Charrette System™ by its former name, “Dynamic Planning.”

Praise for The Charrette Handbook

“Civic leaders are increasingly turning to the charrette as a democratic and holistic approach to planning for rebuilding and new development. This authoritative handbook shows them how to do it right.”

Don Chen, Executive Director
Smart Growth America

“This is arguably the best book on charrettes, the Gray’s Anatomy of these community design workshops.”

Douglas S. Kelbaugh, Dean and Professor of Architecture and Urban Planning
University of Michigan

“This is a wonderfully clear manual on how to conduct public design processes. Forty years ago, such processes were the exception. This book will help to ensure that they become the norm.”

Raymond L. Gindroz, Chairman
Urban Design Associates

"I received the Charrette Handbook a few days ago and have not been able to put it down. There is a wealth of useful information, it is well-written, graphically precise and extremely informative. GREAT JOB! It is a definitive piece for our industry."

Dan Alexander, AIA

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