Ed Parham is a chartered Architect. He joined Space Syntax in 2006 and became Director in 2017.
Ed leads Space Syntax’s Studio and Digital Works streams of activity. These responsibilities combine the strategic development of methodologies and tools with their application to design and planning projects. The overarching objective behind these activities is to create better cities for people, through an understanding of the interactions between spatial networks, infrastructure systems, land uses and demographics.
In his time at Space Syntax he has delivered projects which address a wide range of urban issues including rapid urban growth, regeneration, resilience, health and security.
Through these projects Ed has helped develop Integrated Urban Models. These models combine infrastructure networks with population data to analyse existing conditions, and measure the potential outcomes of future scenarios for city residents. Outcomes are tailored to each project but typically describe the employment opportunities, education or health services within a defined journey time of all residents.
In Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, growth over the past 30 years has created a city where the street network, land uses and densities are uncoordinated. This has led to negative outcomes such as over-reliance on the private car, congestion and social severance. By studying the combined impact of proposed changes to the city’s infrastructure, the Jeddah Plans propose ways to accommodate growth and correct the mistakes of recent urban development.
In the UK, these techniques have been applied at the national scale to study the impact of growth over the next twenty to fifty years. This included analysis of existing, and forecast, population and employment distribution against infrastructure provision, and was used to stimulate a radical alternative scenario connecting existing growth opportunities to infrastructure investment.
These methodologies have also been applied in a generative mode to create city systems that combine the positive characteristics of both planned and organic urban growth. This enables the emergent patterns of occupation which typically only become clear over time to be incorporated from the beginning, therefore reducing the risk of unintended consequences.