Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Community Planning

First Advisor

Rolf Pendall


As I walked around a Middle Eastern city, I saw the challenges of modern day planning practices. Past planning efforts have shaped, molded, and contoured the city according to the cultures and practices of past efforts. In the Gaza Strip, I observed a record of "politically driven" planning efforts or at least a society that has not employed a democratic, equitable planning process. When I noticed that some of the highest density areas in the world abut plots that grow flowers, streets that change from 100 feet in width to ten feet surrounded by buildings, and small enclaves of American style single-family ranch homes protected by barbed-wire fence and military personnel, I got strong feelings of consternation. Questions like "What planning efforts allowed this pattern and organization to occur?" and "How can the situation be improved?" rang through my mind. My goal of this project was to help the situation and provide a better method of utilizing land for residential use in Gaza Strip.

The Palestinian Authority's Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation (MOPIC) is seeking alternative areas for new residential locations Gaza Strip due to present and future demand. MOPIC estimated that 26,000 new housing units are needed between 1995 and 2000 (MOPIC 1995b). MOPIC also expects an estimated 100,000 Palestinians people to return from other countries upon favorable economic and political conditions.