The Planning Tools course explicitly refers to an international context of studies and practices and it wants to critically outline some of the most relevant and useful urban planning and design techniques and experiences.
The course considers the technical approaches that are characterized by a relative permanence and agreement within the planning and design international fields and, in particular, it refers to the municipal development plan.

The two teaching modules (“Planning Systems” given by Andrea Di Giovanni and “Planning Tools” given by Giulia Fini) organize lectures' contents around three main focuses:
1. Essential procedures for drawing up an urban plan with an institutional value (i.e.: zoning; expropriation and transfer development rights; parameters and ratios; facilities sizing);
2. Composition techniques(for the extension of the city; for the preservation and reuse of the historical cores; for the refurbishment of the contemporary territory);
3. Design techniques for open and build urban spaces, with a specific attention to performances.
Each set of techniques will be considered referring both to the original approaches and to the main recent changes in their meanings and uses. In addition several relevant examples will be considered for each set of techniques analyzed.

The different cycles of lectures have the following purposes:
to introduce some general theoretical issues (related to a technical knowledge in urban design and planning);
to propose contemporary examples of urban planning and design experiences in relation to several and diversified contexts;
• to deepen the main planning experiences that have been developed in some European great cities with devoted case studies, considering different technical tools, planning procedures and planning system used.


The final evaluation will be based on:
- An individual oral examination focusing on the selected list of references and on the contents of the lectures;
- The exercise drawn up during the semester and presented before the end of the course. The exercise can be developed in group of three or four people;
- The exercise can be drawn up only by attending students;
- The exercise reviews and the development of the work will be considered for the final evaluation as well;
- Students which won't attend at least 70% of the course lectures will be considered not-attending students.

Teaching staff

Andrea Di Giovanni

Andrea Di Giovanni

Architect, he graduated (1999) at the Politecnico di Milano, PhD in Environmental and Spatial Planning (2003). Assistant Professor in Urban Planning at the DAStU - Department of Architecture and Urban Studies, Politecnico di Milano, where he teaches at the Bachelor of Science in Urban Planning and in the Bachelor of Architectural Sciences in the School of Architecture and Society. He is member of the editorial board of Planum. The Journal of Urbanism.
He has taken part in design competitions, in the drawing up of the General Regulatory Plan of the Municipality of Jesi (2003-2006, leaded by P. Gabellini), in the representation of the strategies of the Emilia Romagna Regional Spatial Plan (2008-2010, head of the research unit P. Gabellini), in the drawing up of the Building and Planning Code of the Municipality of Bologna (2009, leaded by P. Gabellini) and he has led experiences of community planning. He has taken part to the research "Nord/Ovest Milano. Uno studio geografico operativo" (2008-2009, leaded by M. Bolocan Goldstein, S. Botti, G. Pasqui) coordinating with Bertrando Bonfantini one of the research unit. In addition to essays and articles on the main Italian and international journals, he published the book “Spazi comuni. Progetto urbanistico e vita in pubblico nella città contemporanea” (Carocci, 2010) and he is the editor of the book “ Urban Planning and Design. A Workshop and a Course” (Maggioli 2008).


Giulia Fini

Giulia Fini

Architect, Master degree in Architecture from the Faculty of Architecture, Università IUAV di Venezia (2006), PhD in Urban Policies and Projects at Politecnico di Milano (2010) with a dissertation titled From poles to places. Peripheral growth, emerging polarities and new urbanity.
She is a Research Fellow at the DAStU - Department of Architecture and Urban Studies, Politecnico di Milano and collaborates with Laboratorio Rapu+. Her research focuses on new conditions of urbanity in the contemporary city (growing peripheral poles and large scale development projects in particular) and on Italian traditions of urban planning through some important scholars contributions.
She teaches at the Bachelor of Science in Urban Planning, School of Architecture and Society of Politecnico di Milano and she is tutor of the PhD Course in Urban Planning, Policy and Design (DAStU - Politecnico di Milano) after has been tutoring at Università IUAV di Venezia, Politecnico di Milano, as well as international workshops.
She collaborated with ACZ firm of architects (2006-2007), Provincia di Bologna, Settore Pianificazione Territoriale e Trasporti (2007-2008) and Secchi-Viganò firm of architects (2007-2009). She collaborated with Parametro. Rivista internazionale di Architettura e Urbanistica (2003-2006) and since May 2011 she is editor-in chief of Planum. The Journal of Urbanism (
In addition to some essays she published articles on national and international journals.

Cecilia Saibene (Tutor)

Giulia Fini

She graduated (2013) in Urban planning and Territorial policies at the School of Architecture and Society, Politecnico di Milano, with a thesis titled Public Spaces in Changing Cities. Issues and Perspectives, a work focusing on the public space issue considered within several urban paradigms.
She collaborates with the Editorial Staff of Planum. The Journal of Urbanism (, looking after articles and sections and editing specific publications.
Since April 2013, she is tutor in different courses at the School of Architecture and Society of Politecnico di Milano: Laboratorio di Urbanistica (proff. Matteo Bolocan Goldstein e Andrea Di Giovanni); Tecnica Urbanistica (proff. Bertrando Bonfantini e Andrea Di Giovanni); Planning Tools (proff. Andrea Di Giovanni e Giulia Fini).




The exercise is part of an experimental teaching programme promoted by the School of Architecture and Society and by the City of Milan (Department of Urban Planning, Private Constructions and Agriculture). The program aims is to open a debate on possibilities and specific forms of the urban regeneration in some areas of the city affected by phenomena of decay and neglect.

The course selects three particular areas among the several proposed by the program:
• Ambito via Lamarmora - via Orti (Zone A di recupero e Zone B di recupero, R.1.2) | Zone 1
• Ambito di trasformazione urbana Caserma Rubattino (ATU8-C) | Zona 3
• Ambito ex Macello (PA3) | Zona 4

The areas are occupied by three large urban facilities that have had an important role in the evolution of the city until the last century. Today these facilities are no longer able to provide their original benefits and seem obsolete and useless.
The present urban condition is characterized by a state of functional decline of the cities; of aging of building structures once occupied by large urban facilities; by a clear difficulty in the management of eco-friendly cycles. As a consequence these areas can be conceived as important resources for the long-lasting city regeneration and for the reconstitution of a real welfare systems, much more adequate to the present needs of the contemporary urban populations.
The present urban condition is characterized by a non-temporary decrease of the economic resources available for the adjustment of the city, but also by a profound redefinition of urban planning paradigms, making the urban regeneration a very significant issue.


The aim of the exercise is to realize a masterplan for each one of the three mentioned areas. This can be done combining several sets of urban planning and design techniques that will be deeply considered during the Planning Tool course.
The first step will survey the area and its features.
This first step will consider the following aspects:
• Description of the actual condition of the areas. What kind of inspections and targeted surveys can be useful for a description of the characteristics of the area?
• Reading and interpretation of the context. What kind of urban tissues, functions, fluxes and urban populations characterize the area and its surrounding?
• Description of the planning status. What is the status of the existing planning for this area and what are the contents of the current urban development rules?
• Study of the design and planning history. How many and which kind of projects have affected the area? What proposals and forecast have been made?

In a second phase, strictly linked to the first, you will be required to design a project which have to be useful and appropriate according to the characteristics and the specific problems of the area and of  its context.
The masterplan will define the quantitative, functional and structural aspects of the proposal. Some urban design and planning techniques will have an important role in the design of the masterplan:
• Design techniques of urban elements - for built and open spaces - with a specific attention to the performances;
• Composition techniques - for the spatial and functional organization of the elements;
• Urban planning techniques, useful to measure the quantities and phenomena (i.e.: zoning; expropriation and transfer development rights; parameters and ratios; facilities sizing).
Experiences and design references - useful for the drawing-up of the project - will be presented by the professors during the lectures. However, students will also be required to look at useful and relevant examples (according to the specific situation they are going to work on).


The exercise will be carried out by working groups each one consisting of three or four components.
Intermediate reviews will take place in the classroom at the end of each lecture.
During the semester there will be some public presentation and review of the ongoing works.


The exercise consists in two distinct and complementary products:
• A poster table in A0 Uni format;
• A report in A4 Uni format.
Both the products will be evaluated and, together with the oral examination, will define the final mark.

The exercise must be bound and paged on A4 sheets, with numbered page, printed on both sides.
The first page of the exercise (the cover) should contain the following information:
• University, School, Degree Course, Academic year
• Course name and Professors name;
• Name, Surname, Matriculation number of the exercise authors;
• Project title.
The report must contain a complete list of contents; an index of images and charts; a complete list of references of different types: (bibliography, list of websites, list of case studies considered.

The poster must include: the title and a leading-image of the project; a selection of images, sketches, diagrams and complementary texts; a 'box' containing all the information reported on the report cover. The composition should be consistent and appropriate.


Each student will choose one book (or parts of it indicated in the bibliography) among the ones recommended in the reference list and divided into three groups.
The book will be presented and discussed during the oral examination.
Attending students have to study the lectures contents given during the course referring to lecture note provided directly by the professors at the end of the semester;
Non attending students, in addition to the first book, have to study two other books among the ones indicated within the list of references.
The three books must be selected from the three different groups

Group 1 | Urban Planning

• Taylor Nigel (1998), Urban Planning Theory Since 1945, SAGE, London - Thousand Oaks - New Delhi.
[The whole book]
• Healey Patsy (2010), Making Better Places. The Planning Project in the Twenty-First Century, Palgrame Mac Millan, Basingstoke and New York.
[The whole book]

Group 2 | Urban Design

• Cooper Marcus Clare, Francis Carolyn (1998) eds., People Places. Design Guidelines for Urban Open Spaces, John Wiley & Sons, New York.
[Chapters 1 “Urban Plazas”, 2 “Neighborhood Parks”, 3 “Miniparks and Vest-Pocket Parks”, 6 “Child Care Outdoor Spaces”, 8 “Post-Occupancy Evaluation”]
• Carmona Matthew, Tiesdell Steve, Heath Tim, Oc Taner (2010, 2nd ed.), Public Places - Urban Spaces. The Dimension of Urban Design, Elsevier, Burlington (MA).
[Part 1 “Defining Urban Design” and Part 2. “The Dimensions of Urban Design”]

Group 3 | Urbanism

• Marshall Stephen (2009) Cities Design & Evolution, Routledge, London and New York.
[The whole book]
• Kriken John Lund (2010), City Building. Nine Planning Principles for the Twenty-First Century, Princeton Architectural Press, New York.
[The whole book]
• Rudlin David, Falk Nicholas (2009) Sustainable Urban Neighbourhood. Building the 21st Century Home, Architectural Press, Oxford.
[The whole book]
• Steiner Frederick and Butler Kent, American Planning Associetion (2007), Planning and Urban Design Standards. Student Edition, John Wiley & Sons, Hoboken (New Jersey).
[The whole book]
• Talen Emily (2012), City Rules: How Regulations Affect Urban Form, Island Press, Washington, Covelo, London.
[The whole book]


:::: DIDACTICS ORGANISATION :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Time-table and location:
Wednesday | 9.15 - 12.15 | Classroom IIID
Friday | 9.15 - 12.15 | Classroom IV


Andrea Di Giovanni | Wednesday 15:00-16:00 | DAStU Department, Laboratorio RAPu+
via Bonardi 9 (“Nave” Building) | phone +39 02 2399 9408

Giulia Fini | Monday 14:30-15:30 | DAStU Department, Laboratorio RAPu+
via Bonardi 9 (“Nave” Building) | phone +39 02 2399 9408


:::: MAIN DATES ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

More information will be soon available

Intermediate reviews, according to the requests of individual groups, will take place in the classroom after each lecture.

:::: NOTICES :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Friday, October 25st, 2013 | No class
Friday, November 1st, 2013 | No class for Holidays

Con messaggio in data odierna, la Presidenza della Scuola rende noto che causa della concomitanza con gli eventi correlati al conferimento della Laurea Magistrale ad Honorem ad Alvaro Siza Vieira, l'incontro, previsto per la giornata di domani, di presentazione dell'iniziativa "Ri-Formare Milano" è spostato a martedì 12 novembre 2013 - Aula "E.N. Rogers", alla mattina. L’orario di inizio e il programma verranno comunicati a breve. [pubblicato martedì 15 ottobre 2013]


Scheduling of the Exercise

Wednesday 9th October
Exercise presentation

Friday 8th November
Description of the actual condition of the areas
Reading and interpretation of the context / Study of the design and planning history

Friday 15th November
Study of the design and planning history / Reading and interpretation of the context

Friday 22nd November
Description of the planning status

Wednesday 4th December
Exercise Midterm Presentation

Friday 13th December
Masterplan Layout

Friday 10th January
Sizing, zoning, parameters and ratios

Friday 17th January
Urban Elements

Wednesday 22nd January
Exercise Review

Friday 24th January
Exercise Final Presentation

:::: EVALUATION OF EXERCISES ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Non evaluation available.