Sunday, October 21, 2012


BANKERT PARADIGM by Terry Bankert 810-235-1970 ,
draft #2 10/16/12
6:15 am

How should we think about the future of Flint MI?

Attend an Urban Transformation Convention?!/events/427543220628472/

I think involvement in the Flint Master Planning three year project is an excellent way to self educated and create a community coalition to take the ideas and decisions from this vehicle to cause real change in Flint and cultivate and grow new community leadership. Let me know if you are interested.

I have a small role in the Flint Master planning project as a member of one advisory committee to a steering committee that reports to the Flint Planning Commission .

With an open mind I am starting here by constructing a set of assumptions and model of decision making for ME in this process. I fully expect to modify my thoughts in this personal paradigm before the three years Master Plan process is completed.

I will use as my foundation text “The City Reader” 3rd edition edited by Richard T. LeGates and Fredric Stout 2003. Within it I will use the article “Planning Sustainable and Livable Cities” by Stephen Wheeler 1998 which is the second to last chapter and and projects thoughts I agree with about how cities should be reorganized using the Flint Master Planning Process.. Additionally I just liked it.

What follows here I do not present as original work . I will cite other sources when used This paper is but an adaptation of the Wheeler article altered with my opinions . My objective is to create for me a paradigm of decision making for use in the Flint Master planning process..

Draft #1 10/21/2012 by Terry Bankert

Flint Michigan is the murder capital of the United States with a history of Municipal Financial irresponsibility resulting in two takeovers of the city by the State of Michigan. One still under way. Are we just children and victims that cannot sustain a livable city?

What can we citizens of Flint do to create a better future ?

Reorganize is the logical response. Reorganize the culture of the community, its economics, its politics, its sustainability and its livability.

How can we reorganize?

A tool citizens have is an adequately funded professionally run first rate Master Planning Process.
see overview of the Flint Master Planning Process,

You are invited. I suggest an informal group come together. Comprised of citizens formally in the master planning process and some not to learn and monitor the process with the goal of making the conclusions of the group happen. Let us know if you are interested.

Once more my style here is to adopt the Wheeler article to the Flint situation and not present it as my original work. Now on to it.


We know the enormous and exponential growth of the worlds population has a profound and often catastrophic effect on the natural environment of Planet earth. Non-renewable energy sources have been consumed though not yet totally depleted We have been cleared of  our oxygen giving forests, buffalo slaughtered, species extinguished. Did you know the rainforests are disappearing. Today, many argue that global warming caused by population growth, urbanization, and irresponsible fossil fuels consumption now threaten to cause irreparable damage to the climate of the entire world.

We use sustainable to describe a world in which both human and natural systems interact positively to create a more livable city.

How can these elements describde briefly below be used to generate consensus around specific master planning objectives.

Some ask can this process avoid cooptation by existing political forces?

I argue lets use this process to bend if not break the stranglehold of old school politics in Flint Michigan.

Let us demonstrate we have the community will to grow new enlightened leadership or cause the cooptation of the existing political leadership.

Nobody gives you political change based on new sustainability livability paradigms . We have to take it, to force it to happen, to bend others to our will , to co-opt or break them.

Wheeler views the evolution of sustainable urban development thinking and welds it to a new concern for livability. For Flint needed are fewer murders and economic viability to sustain basic services and generally make this city more livable. We must change our view of how this community is organized.

Sustainability used here is development that improves the long-term health of human and ecological systems.

We present here core themes to apply to our decision making as good citizens and to guide efforts or thoughts in the Flint master planning process.

My goal taking from Wheeler is to offer a theoretical framework or paradigm to provide tools to carry out our plan to foster a sustainable and livable community by the   formalism of the master planning process. My foundation objective is to change the political culture and seed our community with new thoughts and new future leadership.

SPECIFICS for Flint's Urban Development Strategy,

1. create a long term plan not year by year or election cycle by election cycle.

2.recognize that a core theme in urban sustainability requires we pay attention to the natural environment.

3.Urban sustainability master planning requires holistic and interdisciplinary connections of the insights of ;

a. biologists

b.transit planners



e.experts in land use

f.experts in transportation

g.experts community development

h.environmental planning

i. experts in sociology

j. experts in political science

k.experts in criminal justice

l. experts in the law

m. experts urban studies and public administration

n.experts in the arts

o. YOU!

There are several directions our conversations should take to reach a consensus on Flints sustainable urban developmental policy and master plan. We recommend these core values be articulated to re build Flint  formally and informally to achieve sustainability and livability.These core values are;

1. no unplanned urban sprawl

2.efficient infrastructure

3.compact efficient land use

4.fewer automobiles necessary in the city

5.more efficient resource use

6.restoring natural systems

7.good housing social ecology

9.sustainable economics urban-ism

11.combine land use housing and transit design in environmentally sensitive ways

12.seed pressure to change the culture of Flint

13. Seed new political and institutional leadership


by Terry Bankert Flint Divorce Bankruptcy Attorney 810-235-1970

The City Reader” 3rd edition edited by Richard T. LeGates and Fredric Stout 2003. “Planning Sustainable and Livable Cities” by Stephen Wheeler 1998 beginning page 486

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