Second Built Environment Analysis – Extra

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.

Work Cited


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.

Georgia State University Digital Built Environment Description


Georgia State University’s website found at 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!


Annotated Bibliography 10 – Progressive through The Millennial Legacy

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 

Annotated Bibliography 7 – Making Place In The Nonplace Urban Realm

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.


Within the texts of “Making Place In The Nonplace Urban Realm: Notes On The Revitalization Of Downtown Atlanta” author Charles Rutheiser discusses and examines the deep-rooted structural problems within the city of Atlanta and how this has and will affect the future of the built environment of Atlanta. Contained throughout Rutheiser’s essay is evidence that though Atlanta has been successful in job creation and population growth over the years, the social infrastructure and physical landscape of the city is gradually deteriorating and is negatively effecting the exterior built environment of Atlanta. This source provides factual evidence to those who are seeking to understand and gain knowledge on enhancing the atmospheric and urban landscape of residential and commercial neighborhoods of Atlanta to perfect the exterior environment of the space and to match the economic growth and success of the city as well. Ruthesiers arguments in this source are mainly comprised of factual evidence which adhere to the exterior infrastructure of the city and provide minimal biased opinions throughout the piece. This source helps in providing information on how the city of Atlanta, though very successful for coming generations, can better itself within its physical attributes as well.

Reading Summary 6 – Better Online Living Through Content Moderation

Better Online Living Through Content Moderation


As we begin to learn about content control features and the reality of online abuse through Melissa Kings article “Better Online Living through Content Moderation” we gain knowledge into how important and needful it is in society today to employ content control features in the online world. Nobody should be required to read or listen to content if they do not want to (King). This statement is the premise for the argument of instilling content control features and this issue has grown to become popular problem for the world in this day and age technology is more advanced and progressive than ever seen before.

King first opens her beginning argumentative paragraphs of this article with a counterpart; considering the argument in the views in which individuals against content control feel about this issue. Content control is viewed as for those who are “weak” and “too sensitive” and is criticized for not allowing individuals to be exposed to the reality of hurt and negativity they will come to terms with in the online world. Exposure theory is a method used that is supported by those against content control and is commonly known as a type of theory designed to combat severe anxiety through gradual and controlled exposure to its source, to inure an individual to these triggers and lesson the disruptions they can cause. However, for someone suffering from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) this method of exposure could increase trauma and would initially worsen the problem instead of being a solution.

King states that Millennials are more progressive than any other generation about this issue and acknowledge that many individuals are effected by trauma from different forms of online abuse and bullying. It is also believed that online harassment is a myth and is simply mean comments said on the internet with no real connection to public safety. The fact is, threats of violence online can be a cause of PTSD in and of itself (Lack). As we read on throughout the article we notice that online harassment does indeed effect mental health and eventually if worse enough can cause cases of PTSD.

Next King begins to discuss specific types of content control features available and suggests that blocklists are important tools to take note of. Blocklists are controversial because the idea perceived with this tool is that one gave in to the abusers harassment and had to resort to blocking people instead of just dealing with the issue up front. The author however expresses that this method of dealing with online abuse is actually a smart idea and ideally the best resort to immediately stop the abuse.


Criticism in all aspects of the online world is bound to take place for most individuals because of the territory but is said to be worse for women than for men. This is said to be particularly true with women who are involved in areas that are predominantly male dominated. As the author states each point of this argument and comes to a conclusion her opinions about this topic revolve around the need for content control features and tools so that people have more room to act on behalf on behalf of their own mental and emotional needs.

Reading Summary 5 – Journeying Through Life With Color Walks


Often times we find ourselves busy trying to get things done in our daily lives that we don’t really take the time to stop and observe our surroundings along the way. There is so much natural beauty and vibrant colors that we often purposely give a blind eye to because we do not have the skill of observation. This article called “Color Walking” written by Phia Bennin and Brendan McMullan describes their experiences as they tried a new way of observing their surroundings.

The introduction of this article familiarizes the audience to a man named William Burroughs. Burroughs was an American novelist, short story writer, spoken word performer, and taught student on writing and how to writing with specific detail and color. Burroughs had many addictions to various substances throughout his life, but this is what also helped shape and mold him into the type of writer he is today and the out of ordinary techniques of observing environments to make writing more specific and unique.

As we continue to read through the article, the authors convey to readers that William Burroughs created a tool called color walks to help and inspire his students in finding a new way of observing and taking in the outside surroundings much more than one would otherwise. The task of the color walk as told by both authors is quite simple and requires you to think and observe with an open mind. The color walk is where you open the door, walk outside and pick a starting color. This color can be any color that immediately catches your eye as soon as you make your first steps outside. Once you have chosen a color, you continue walking and following all the objects you see with same shade of color that you have chosen. As you walk you are to follow each object one after another as they appear and continue following the color you have picked in whatever direction the objects lead you.

Continuing through the middle portion of the article, both authors state that they decided to give this method a try and wanted put this form of observation to the test and mentioned that they would also allow themselves to switch from color to color as they journeyed through their walk. Bennin and McMullan’s color walk took place at WNYC in lower Manhattan. The authors stated, “Stepping out the revolving door, we followed blues which led us to pinks, which pulled us towards violets.” The article also has an added in reference timeline of their recordings throughout the walk giving us an in depth source of analysis of the objects they followed and what times they followed them at. The walk started a little after 4pm with a beautiful blue scarf, followed by blue in basketball courts, and ending with purple and pink on clothing and in nooks and crannies. Towards the end of the article, the authors share their experiences and say that this method of observation keeps the colors and things seen to remain in your brain and eyes much longer and also helps in noticing so many objects and colors throughout the environment that one would not normally notice on a regular walk. The article comes to a conclusion by both authors sharing their advice for anyone else who would like to try the color walk for themselves. There best advice is to work with an uninterrupted full hour, picking a color that you really enjoy, and to also switch up colors if you get lost.

Built Enviornment Description Interior Digital Record 5 – French Market Flowers

flower shop

While wandering through all that Krog Street Market has to offer, it is suddenly obvious that Krog Street is not known solely for the beer and well crafted, unique eateries, they are also known for their famous horticultural market located to the middle right hand side of the building called French Market Flowers. They offer various selections of flowers from “farmer florists” in the U.S. particularly in California that promote smaller carbon footprints, fair labor, and careful growing practices. This market is an Eco friendly spot that adds a pop of color to the Krog Street Market atmosphere.

Built Environment Description Interior Digital Record 4 – Krog Street Market SIgn

Krog Market SIgn

This image taken inside of the Krog Street Market captures the back sitting area of the building. If sitting in a crowded area with much noise and bright lighting ins’t for you, Krog Street Market has a designated seating area in the back with chairs and tables for customers and individuals simply visiting to rest in. Overlooking this space is a beautifully painted wall with the words “Krog St Market” on it accented with hanging lights to give this space a calm but still elegant atmosphere.