Comprehensive Master Plan for Tehran
Tehran, Iran
Completed: 1969

The Comprehensive Plan for Tehran was based on extensive research studies and analyses of the social, economic, political, and physical base of the City of Tehran. A 25-year planning horizon was chosen as the framework for devising alternative development strategies to guide urban growth and the rehabilitation of aging areas of the City.

The Plan propose that growth and development be fostered at 3 levels of self-supporting urban units, each served by an activity center with a scale of services ranging from small neighborhoods (5,000 people), to community centers (20,000 to 30,000 people), all the way up to urban regions (300,000 to 500,000 population clusters). Each level of community structure would be integrated closely with their support services including the educational system; residential, commercial and governmental developments.

The second most innovative aspect of the Plan was its recognition of the need for an integrated mass rapid transportation system at the same time that it sought to minimize the use of private cars for personal mobility within the City. To accomplish these seemingly divergent goals, the Plan proposed a major two-level transportation concept. The rapid transit spine would serve the highest density corridors in support of the established westward trend of growth of the City. A secondary spine of freeways paralleled that higher density corridor, providing a complementary lower density corridor within the rapid transit loops. Combinations of highways, separated by open spaces, were designed to serve different levels of communities and their support activities.

A third series of detailed recommendations in the Plan called for renewal and rejuvenation of older, existing areas of the City. The Plan recommended small, locally-phased renewal efforts be undertaken in neighborhoods using a programmed strategy dedicated to minimizing disruption to the established social and communal fabric of each area. After a collection of blocks was physically enhanced, the resident families would be returned together to enable them to retain their long-standing links and relationships -- factors so important to long-term community viability.