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Halloween Costumes for City Planners


Halloween and city planning are two subjects that seem to go together.  Sure walkable urbanism is a great boon for trick-or-treating, but few people get excited about dressing up as Harland Bartholomew on October 31st.  Nevertheless, there are a few creative souls who manage to bring a bit of urban planning whimsy to All Hallow’s Eve. Here are a few ideas and photographs submitted to Planetizen in previous years.

A traffic cone, a traffic light, and a bike lane celebrating Halloween, urban planning style!

Image credit: Planetizen

Here at PlaceSpeak, we’re particularly fond of this idea:

  • CharretteThis costume requires two things: white clothing and lots of markers. Ask your fellow community members to write down their advice and suggestions.
If that is a bit too esoteric for you, hear are a few other great ideas.  Be sure to check out the Planetizen site for several more great ideas!
  • Bike LaneHere’s an easy one. Just get some black clothes and some white tape. Make two strong lines from each foot to each shoulder and tape out a simple bike on your torso in between. Fashionable and bikeable.
  • Walkable NeighborhoodSimply paint a bunch of footprints all over your clothes to show how easy it is to get around you on foot. Walkscore of you: 100!
  • Urban Growth BoundaryThis is a good one for making friends. Get yourself a hula hoop and see how many people can fit inside. How many people can your region support?
  • Transit Oriented DevelopmentThis is the ideal costume if you’re going out with a group. One person dresses up like a bus and everyone else goes as buildings. Just remember to stay close to each other. But if you do get separated, you can still be transit adjacent development.
  • RoundaboutCut out a large cardboard circle to go around your middle.  Adhere fake (or real, depending on availability and your own ambition) flowers and plants to your torso and head.  I guarantee you SOMEBODY who gets and appreciates the costume (most likely a fellow planner-nerd) will have fun running circles around you at some point.
Planetizen reader Ned Russell from New York City dressed as a roundabout.

Image credit: Planetizen

Have you seen any great city planning inspired costumes?  Have these examples inspired some ideas of your own?  Let us know in the comments!


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