Urban Land Institute (ULI) San Francisco

Seeing the Better City Presentation and Audit
June 2017
Chuck delivered a presentation based on his book, Seeing the Better City, and provided commentary on a five-stop walk with the ULI San Francisco’s mid-career group, which is composed of seasoned real estate and finance professionals working in the city. The five featured venues included public spaces and buildings, and explored the intersection of people and place, homelessness, shared amenities, and more. Venues were co-selected with ULI staff to illustrate key concepts in the book as well as to foster discussion around real-world challenges related to urban growth and change in San Francisco.

Seattle Architecture Foundation (SAF)

Center for Architecture and Design

Seattle by Design: Observing and Envisioning a Better Seattle
Presentation and Visual Analysis
June 2017
Chuck delivered a presentation to a group of built-environment professionals based on his book, Seeing the Better City. Using both local and international examples, he illustrated the ways that human experience intersects with the built world, and offered strategies for democratizing planning and land use through promoting public involvement. Chuck then led a walk through surrounding downtown districts and along the waterfront to demonstrate his Urban Diary tool as a way to visually document rapidly changing locations and to invite participants to begin their process to envision a better Seattle.

KTH University, Royal Institute of Technology,

Centre for the Future of Places (CFP)

Stockholm, Sweden
Seeing the Better City Overview and Urbanism Roundtable
May 2017

Chuck participated in the first of a series of professionally filmed roundtable conversations on urbanism featuring prominent practitioners and academics titled: “The Delphi Conversations; Discussions on Urbanism and Beyond.” Chuck also delivered a presentation on the principles and urban applications of the Urban Diary tool and the LENS method to members of a leading Stockholm urban design firm, Brunnberg & Forshed Arkitektkontor AB.

Chuck returns to Stockholm this November to serve as a visiting affiliate faculty researcher at KTH University and its Centre for Future of Places. He will collaborate with faculty in teaching and development of a graduate class on urban observation, give several talks, and conduct applied research through the Center that will refine the observational urbanism methodology in Seeing the Better City.


Spokane, Washington
Neighborhood Audit and Presentations
October 2016

A land use-oriented non-profit organization and a group of community leaders expressed interest in exploring neighborhood  infill strategies applicable to Spokane. Chuck gave a presentation of photographic examples from Seeing the Better City followed by a walking workshop to explore the seam between two Spokane residential areas: Kendall Yards, a newly redeveloped brownfield, and West Central, a diverse, often underserved historic neighborhood. Participants documented what they observed regarding urban form, public transit, parking, accessibility and other city elements via photographs, sketches, and notes. Participants also engaged in dialogue about the distinct separation that exists between these two communities—despite their overlap along opposite sides of the same street— and explored potential solutions for improving communication and connection. The next day, Chuck met with Futurewise and city and county planning staffs to discuss the workshop results.

University of Strathclyde, Urban Design Studies Unit (UDSU)

Glasgow, Scotland
Summit Keynote Address, Roundtable Discussions, Urban Diary Workshop
October 2014

The Summit assembled leading international voices in the “plot-based” urbanism dialogue—focused on coordinated small-scale development within historic property development patterns in the United Kingdom—with the goal to move towards practical implementation and greater collaboration in research, practice, and policy.

Chuck’s keynote, titled, “Returning to the First Principles of Urbanism,” posited that the underlying rationales for urban policy, planning, and regulation are best understood by looking at examples from history as well as by observing and gaining a better understanding of the everyday uses of urban space.

Chuck also participated in roundtable discussions and led a student workshop on Urban Diaries and Decoding Places.  Students interpreted selected Glasgow locations and presented lessons learned on how to observe cities and for implementation within policy and planning discussions.

Committee for Perth and City of Fremantle

Fremantle, Australia
Presentation and Analysis
September 2015

Chuck provided international examples and visual input as part of a team and mayoral presentation at a public forum organized by the Committee for Perth, a regional leadership organization focused on issues critical to Perth’s future growth and development. The aim of the forum, titled “Future Freo,” was to assist Fremantle in visioning alternative models for growth and to present baseline economic, social and demographic research on local, regional, national, and international trends.

Chuck returns to seven Australian cities this October for multiple engagements, including presentations, workshops, explorations, and consulting with local governments about community input processes, placemaking, and associated planning and regulatory approaches.