Throughout this final step of perfecting our built environment spaces I learned a lot not only about the mistakes and improvements that were able to be made, but also about the overall function of our digital spaces as well. The final extra extra credit part of this assignment allowed for us to reexamine the work we have been doing in small pieces, and completely remodel and perfect our sites. The main improvement that I could see needed changes on my site as I worked on the first part of the extra extra credit part of this project was that more tags were needed for each of my individual posts. Though a few of my posts had tags, many did not. I went back and revisited many of my recently added posts and customized as many posts as I could. I had also trashed many useless drafts and notes that were left as my posts that helped clean up the site and make the site more resourceful. After all of this, I made a quick scan of all of my work and made touch ups here and there on font sizes and colors present throughout the site so that the site has an overall equivalent and pretty feel to it as well as being able to clearly read and access the content provided!
The City of Atlanta, Psychologically Impairing its Residents
Different spaces and environments are equipped with specific features that psychologically change ones mood and behavioral characteristics. This is evident in the way we feel and function in our day to day lives in the many different atmospheres we are in. Have you ever noticed the way you feel when you enter into a library or a large room of bodies studying? Doesn’t it psychologically make you feel as if you want to just pick up a book or begin being productive and start doing homework or study notes? This feeling is caused by the built environment of the particular space you are in and the vibes that are emitted from this area. This same concept is also true in different geographical and urbanized or suburban areas as well. For example, the built environment of Atlanta has a special and unique atmosphere that psychologically brings out different emotions and types of work ethics for individuals verses being outside of the metropolitan city area of Atlanta.
There are various factors that contribute to a particular spaces built environment. A few of these contributing factors include the architectural structure of a space, the colors associated and themed in a particular environment; and the overall vibes a space emits due to the types of people around, location, and geographical setting. An experiment conducted by psychologists at the University of British Columbia took a look at how the color of interior walls influence the imagination. The results seemed to be noticeably understandable because of how these colors usually make us feel as well. Red was automatically associated with danger, which made individuals of the space feel more alert and aware. The color blue psychologically improved the imaginative power and creative outputs of our brain. Colors are an essential ingredient to the built environment of a space and contribute well to the behavioral and mental states of many individuals residing in the city of Atlanta. We spend our lives inside buildings, our thoughts shaped by their walls (Lehrer). This statement is particularly true for residents in cities such as Atlanta. If we take the time to reflect upon the colors and architectural bodies that people living in Atlanta are faced with on a day to day basis, the truth is that the environment is a very dull and serious atmosphere. Streets are often gray with tall office buildings and skyscrapers everywhere, with little to no natural life or objects of vibrant colors. This built environment that the city of Atlanta has grown accustom to, is psychologically damaging to its residents and workers. People living in cities have a 21% increased risk of anxiety disorders and a 39% increased risk of mood disorders (Jha).
As the environment of Atlanta is very fast paced and business oriented, this atmosphere is then transferred into the way people feel psychologically. In some aspects this environment positively effects individuals. For example, because Atlanta is home to two major college campuses in Georgia (Georgia Tech and Georgia State University) as well as being home to many business headquarters, the feelings of productivity and strong work ethic is evident throughout the atmosphere of Atlanta streets. Living in an environment of city buildings and people wearing suits and carrying brief cases adds to the productive aesthetics of the built environment of Atlanta. This psychologically motivates and drives individuals to work hard and be productive just by the vibes emitted from Atlanta’s built environment.
City environments that are generally closed off to natural habitats such as parks and gardens have shown to negatively affect ones psychological state. In the article of “City living effects your brain” scientists found that the two regions of your brain involved in the regulation of emotion and anxiety become overactive in city-dwellers. As the reality of homelessness and poverty are evidently displayed along the streets of Atlanta, the atmosphere of scarcity and depression are felt by most individuals and contribute to the built environment of Atlanta as well. There is an increase of anxiety and mood disorder cases within cities compared to rural and suburban life. Personally this has been true to my life as well as many other college students who have migrated to the city for better business opportunities and educational facilities. I am clinically diagnosed with a mild case of general anxiety disorder and having recently residing in the city area of Atlanta, the feelings of this disorder has considerably increased. The city’s built environment that portrays poverty, hopelessness, and basic architectural designs that have minimal color and vibrancy along with being located along side Grady Memorial Hospital and areas of high crime rates heavily increase emotions of anxiety and depression.
As the built environment of cities is often too overwhelming for most people, there are many outlets of natural green areas to help alieve the neurological stress associated with city life. Green spaces must be a key consideration in urban planning if the health of a city and its people are both considered important. There are numerous health benefits associated with access to public open space and parks. Access to vegetated areas such as parks, open spaces, and playgrounds has been associated with better perceived general health, reduced stress levels, reduced depression and more. If we take a look at the many public green areas the city of Atlanta has available to its residents and nonresidents, it is evident that though these areas are not heavily advertised, Atlanta has many resources for people to experience wild life as well. The famously known Belt Line and Piedmont Park located in Midtown Atlanta offers a space to get open clean air and experience green natural life. Many people however are not aware of the various small unpublicized areas that Atlanta offers in neighborhood areas located within the city.
The Edgewood Community Learning Garden for example is a perfect place to relieve some of the stress and seriousness the built environment of Atlanta makes you feel. This garden is the perfect place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city without having to travel out far. This garden offers a variety of different artifacts spread out sparsely throughout the garden with many different types of greenery and vegetation such as a pollinator garden, a rain garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, and nine veggie beds. The garden is not modern at all but instead has an old-fashioned farm land feel to it because of its wood built architecture and chicken coop located in the back of the garden. The minimal color associated with the garden other than the greenery of the vegetation helps in bringing individuals to a simplistic mindset and focusing more on the literal nature and calmness of the environment. This quaint spacious garden located right outside the heart of Atlanta is open to all visitors and even has an open volunteer page for gardening hours and associated community projects on its website. The garden is about ten minutes outside of Downtown, Atlanta that offers a very free and inviting atmosphere that has a quiet peaceful space to relax and distress.
The built environment of green spaces also plays a key role in the mental and psychological state of individuals just as city atmospheres do. Green spaces provide calming and inspiring environments as well as encourage learning, inquisitiveness, and alertness. Green spaces also help in restoring the mind’s ability to focus and study well. Psychologically, the color green is a natural peacemaker that balances out emotions between the head and the heart. Spaces such as the city of Atlanta has very minimal green area which makes the built environment of the space eventually protrude negative and depressed feelings.
The built environment of Atlanta due to its loss of greenery, color, and social/ economic conditions force receptors of the brain to psychologically effect the behavior and mood of how we feel. Overcrowding, noise, and social fragmentation all play important roles on developing the built environment of the city. The built environment in which we live in is crucial to our health not solely because of physical health issues, but also our mental health as well. Research shows that improvements to urban life should be made to improve mental and psychological health. The constant feeling of needing to succeed and earn more felt in the city add to the city’s built environment which initially cause stress and fatigue in the mind. Science correspondent Alok Jha states, “What we can do is try and make cities better places to live in from the view of mental health. Up to now, there really isn’t a lot of evidence-base to tell a city planner what would be good, what would be bad.” As improvements are slowly being made to better the built environment of Atlanta, we should also keep in mind that the emotions felt when being in urban settings is simply part of the built environment of the city and that although urban life has its negative effects, the built environment of Atlanta also offers spaces that help alleviate such feeling and emotions as well.
Jha, Alok. “City Living Affects Your Brain, Researchers Find.” the Guardian. N.p., 22 June 2011. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
John, Sophia. “Built Environment Descriptions | Sophia John | Page 2.” Exterior Built Environment Description – Edgewood Community Learning Garden. N.p., 13 Feb. 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Lehrer, Jonah. “The Psychology of Architecture | WIRED.” wev. wired. N.p., 14 Apr. 2011. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Parallelus. “Urban Planning and the Importance of Green Space in Cities to Human and Environmental Health.” N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
“The Color Green.” Empowered By Color. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Atlanta, the City Made for Millennials
The rise and growth of a new generation heading into adulthood and taking control of vibrant new opportunities and stepping into the workforce is often fascinating to watch and know about. In particular, location is key into observing where the new up and coming generation is migrating and adapting to. Of the world today, Millennials are now the focus of all major cities and well-known companies because of the level of technology and young vibe that this generation can offer to booming cities. The built environment of the city of Atlanta offers a great outlet for Millennials to progress and adapt well to living and working in. The city of Atlanta is a major city and a main hub for many big corporations with an abundant amount of resources within the city that cater towards every age group, class, and ethnicity sector. Millennials however thrive and adapt to the built environment of Atlanta much more than any other group residing in the city. This will also affect the future of the city as well as the future generations wanting to migrate and experience living in the city as opposed to suburban areas of Georgia.
The built environment of Atlanta is very attractive to Millennials because of the unique atmosphere the environment brings that is not found anywhere else throughout the state. Historically, the state of Georgia offers counties and neighborhoods that are majority white populated which are inevitably enclosed with aspects of conservativeness and unprogressive views. As the site The Millennial Legacy states in its article discussing progressive views of millennials, “In terms of homosexuality, interracial relationships, gender roles, immigration, and religion, poll after poll and study after study confirms that Millennials hold decidedly more progressive views than all other generations alive today, and in history.” As Millennials eventually drift away from the hometowns they were born and raised in, searching for a space that has a built environment they most passionately identify with is crucial to the atmosphere they want to live. An article released giving recognition to the top progressive cities that are perfect for people under 30 comprise the city of Atlanta for its many unique and distinctive neighborhoods and also because of how well known the city has become for hosting the biggest film industries outside of L.A. and New York. This exemplifies that the city is not only progressive in terms of politics, but also in different areas such as entertainment and technology as well. The built environment of Atlanta consisting of neighborhoods that emit hipster vibes make Millennials adapt to the atmosphere of the city much more than any other generation.
The core of a particular locations “built environment” first has to do with what purpose that specific area or space serves. When discussing Millennials being attracted to the built environment of Atlanta, we first must recognize what specific shops and attractions this space provides that is so appealing to this generation. As Millennials are in the stages of beginning to start entering the workforce, it is essential that they are located in area that provides endless opportunities and populated with booming corporations and industries. Millennials need options, resources, and security. “Naturally, Millennials are attracted to markets with good job prospects and low unemployment,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president RealtyTrac. As Atlanta having one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation, many doors are open for the upcoming newly received degree holders which in fact are Millennials. Peachtree center located in the heart of Atlanta is composed of urban city businesses, company headquarters, and upscale professional industries. This built environment of Atlanta gives the city the nation’s leading metropolitan area in terms of population growth and job creation over the last three decades (Rutheiser 9). Psychologically, the atmospheric vibes of the urban built environment lifestyle of Atlanta emits feelings of motivation and drive that pushes Millennials to go out and conquer elite jobs that are mostly attractive in Atlanta because of the urban layout and design.
Part of Atlanta’s built environment that keeps this space successful is keeping the economy always thriving and being up to date and resourceful with up to date technology. Atlanta poses a well advanced technological atmosphere in which Millennials excel in and in which all others get weeded out and fail in. Advanced technology incorporated with successful companies build the basic built environment of Atlanta. Downtown Atlanta is attracting companies that are looking to employ Millennials, and many of them are opting for Peachtree Center (Leclaire).
According to Pew, for the first time the Millennial generation aged from 18 to 34 are now the largest segment of the workforce. This data provides evidence that the workforce, in particular city businesses, are now populated with the younger generation. “Every city out there is trying to recruit highly educated 20-somethings, that’s how you drive the economy in this digital age (Cornett). The built environment of Atlanta initially requires that Millennials occupy the area not only to keep the youthful atmosphere of Atlanta alive, but initially to keep businesses, jobs, and the economy alive as well.
As companies want to attract Millennials, which are the best quality employees, an environment where there are transportation options and the ability to commute without driving is needed. Atlanta’s built environment caters perfectly to the needs of Millennials and others as well because of the multiple modes of conveyance the city offers. “Downtown offers sidewalks, bike lanes and a streetcar service. In addition, downtown has five MARTA stations, including the largest in the system” Leclaire states. This allows college students and young professionals easy access to populate Atlanta.
(Map of several major highways that all lead to the heart of the city of Atlanta)
Atlanta’s built environment is also largely made up of thriving restaurants and the bar scene catering to the foodie culture that exists among the young professionals and college students. As we observe the lifestyle environmental atmosphere of Atlanta, it is easily noticeable that shops and activities are catered towards young people. As Atlanta poses several famous yoga studios, gyms around every corner, and cutesy bars located relatively close and in walking distance of many apartment homes within the area, the youthful way of life is displayed and felt quite prominently. Atlanta exhibits and features many out of the ordinary spaces and hipster shops/ boutiques that help portray the young vibes of the city. The city offers cool spaces such as Krog Street market, the Beltline, and several bars that only Millennials feel comfortable in. The neighborhood of Midtown in particular is one in which Millennials are most welcome and attracted to because of the all essential shops and stores that are located all with the one area. Midtown is the center for nightlife, business life, and great park areas during the day such as Piedmont Park. Though the population of elderly folks living in this area are numerous, they themselves also display the youthful hipster vibes of Midtown.
As Atlanta is well known for filming famous television shows and movies throughout the city, this prompts adolescents to contently be within the area. This influence of films and celebrities residing and performing daily tasks within the area of Atlanta attracts Millennials to be out and about and eventually associate Atlanta with young fun vibes and feelings. For example, Octane coffee is a famously known coffee shop in Atlanta due to the fact that this is the spot in which many celebrities residing in Atlanta come hangout, chill, and lounge in. This brings many young adolescents to this coffee shop as well as around the area too. Each of these details is what makes the built environment of Atlanta so marketable to Millennials and the future generations wanting to migrate and experience living in the city.
Many may argue that the reality of life seen on the streets of Atlanta negatively affect the future of Atlanta’s residents and future generations of Atlanta, however the built environment of this space is partly made up of aspects of the city like this. Though life in the city is drastically different and surreal than suburban areas within Georgia, many Millennials enjoy experiencing these attributes of the built environment of the city. Millennials love the environment of Atlanta because it is unique and different than any other city within the state. The built environment of Atlanta is always changing and becoming more diverse within cultures, laws, and social acceptance. Millennials are more adapt to change and open with new ideas, values, and principles. Social issues play a large role in the built environment of Atlanta. The city is more open to various gender associations, gay marriage, and legal use of marijuana. These issues are mainly accepted by Millennials and is a factor in which this generation finds the city very easy to adapt too and also be a part of the community. Social issues are where Millennials hold the most progressive views (Progressive).
While the built environment of Atlanta ranges widely based on which specific neighborhood an individual is in, the common psychological feelings of free spirit and the carefree atmosphere the whole city exhibits drives most of the older generations away, and Millennials into relocating and populating the city.
Felder, Ben. “Cover Story: Millennials Are Changing the City Forever | Oklahoma Gazette.” Oklahoma Gazette. N.p., 7 Jan. 2015. Web. 27 Apr. 2016.
Green, Josh. “Cobb Official: Millennials Want a Piece of This Action.” Curbed Atlanta. N.p., 2 Feb. 2016. Web. 26 Apr. 2016.
Leclaire, Jennifer. “Why Downtown Atlanta Attracts Millennials.” GlobeSt.com. N.p., 16 Apr. 2016. Web. 26 Apr. 2016.
Rutheiser, Charles. “Making Place In The Nonplace Urban Realm: Notes On The Revitalization Of Downtown Atlanta.” Urban Anthropology and Studies of Cultural Systems and World Economic Development 26.1 (1997): 9–42. Print.
Mathews, Chris. “Millennials Have Taken over the American Workforce.” FORTUNE. N.p., 11 May 2015. Web. 27 Apr. 2016.
Monitors, Studio. “Progressive.” Web. The Millennial Legacy. N.p., 27 July 2011. Web. 27 Apr. 2016.
Georgia State University’s website found at gsu.edu is a well-crafted digital space designed with a simple layout and easy to find main menus and tabs. Upon opening up to the home page of the site, the layout pattern is simple and easy to navigate through, and the colors are relatively neutral and basic because of the main use of white, blue, and grey. The site offers many tabs and links that will redirect its users to exactly where they need to go. At the top of the page there is a tab for each specific area that the school focuses on as well as links for alumni as well. The website has current news that is constantly updating as well as links to articles of interesting world news and news about the school itself as well. The site offers links to apply to the school on the opening homepage with easy to follow instructions as well as individual tabs for students and for faculty and staff. The Georgia State webpage also offers a link to the online map of the campus which includes a search bar in order for visitors to find buildings, offices, and whatever else they are looking for on the schools campus. This digital space has their contact information distinctly provided at the bottom of the sites home page as well as links to Georgia State University’s social media accounts accessible with just a click so that you can always be connected to the site digitally!
This part of the Georgia State web site is the coolest feature that the site offers. Upon scrolling to the very bottom of the sites home page, you will notice that this is where the schools contact information is located. Above the contact information and below the Georgia State University “G” emblem, there are icons for each social media account. If you hoover your mouse over each individual icon and click, the page will be automatically redirected to each individual social media account of Georgia State. This feature is very handy and quick to access.
One commonly known problem with many online sites is being able to navigate through the site and being able to find where the application link to the business, school, or any other type of organization is. However Georgia State’s web site has distinct clear links located in the middle of the home page that direct you to this image above. The application part to Georgia State’s web site is easy to find and has links as well as frequently asked questions to help navigate and make the application process much easier and user friendly!
The main opening page of the Georgia State University web site is always up to date with current news article headlines and links to interesting articles about Georgia State and various other topics as well. Scrolling down through the main web site page will lead you to this image of current news happenings around the world as well as new achievements and research that Georgia State University has been recognized for.
On the main gsu.edu web page there is a “Map” tab located at the very top of page, and when clicked you will be redirected to a large map of the whole campus of Georgia State University. There is also a search bar at the top of the map which can be used to find a particular area or building on campus. To test this feature of the map out, I searched up Urban Life Building and this map image of Urban Life along with a description of the building appeared on screen.
This is the image of the opening page of the Georgia State University web site which is accessible by gsu.edu. The opening page is very user friendly with eight different main tabs located at the top of the page which leads to each individual main menu. The site is open and easy to navigate to find what you are looking for. The very top of the page also has main menu tabs for student needs, faculty and staff needs, as well as a search bar to find exactly what you are looking for.
Monitors, Studio. “Progressive.” Web. The Millennial Legacy. N.p., 27 July 2011. Web. 27 Apr. 2016. The article titled “Progressive” by the webpage of The Millennial Legacy discusses the social changes and environmental progressiveness that Millennials are now bringing to the … Continue reading