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Ahoura Zandiatashbar


[Zandiatashbar, Ahoura]


Ahoura is a PhD student at the department of planning and landscape architecture in CAPPA. With an outstanding background in architectural undergraduate studies and activities, he holds a master of architecture II degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the Geofutures program.

While taking his master’s degree, he participated in several research projects consist of Los Angeles Agriscape, revitalization of Shiraz’s inner city’s urban heritage, and safety assessment in heritage residential neighborhoods. He had presented and published the results of his research activities in local academic journals and international conferences. During his PhD career, he pursues his research interests in city branding, economic development via social-cultural enhancement, and economic growth associated with the TOD developments. He is strongly expert in spatial analysis techniques through GIS products and possesses an advanced skillset in visualization/graphic techniques and web-design via various products from adobe software package.

Professional Preparation

    • 2014 M. Arch II in Architecture and UrbanismRensselaer Polytechnic Institute
    • 2019 PhD in Urban Planning and Public AffairsUniversity of Texas at Arlington


    • Sept 2014 to Present Graduate Reseach Assistant
      University of Texas at Arlington   Office of the President   Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs   College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs   Institute of Urban Studies


  • Membership
    • Jan 2014 to Present American Planning Association

Awards and Honors


  • Past
      Does Built Environment Matter for Innovation? A Quantitative Study of the Physical Assets of Innovation Districts in the United States
      A growing number of leaders, policy makers, developers, city influencers, and researchers are working on unleashing the concealed economic potential of cities. “Innovation District” is a recent urban model that has emerged as the result of the U.S. economy’s transformation from traditional industrial economies to the knowledge-intensive. The distinguished built environment characteristics of “Innovation Districts” are density, walkability, land use mix, and enhanced transit accessibility. They are identified as the contributors to the innovation-driven economic prosperity through business clustering, creative economy, and regional economic resiliency. A large body of theoretical and qualitative studies have sought to shed a light on the concept of Innovation District. There is, however, a lack of quantitative evidence that support these studies. This national study seeks to fulfill this gap in the literature and examine the relationship between the built environmental characteristics, such as walkability, transit quality and urban form, and innovation generation at the neighborhood level. The authors used Multi-level Modeling (MLM) to account for the built environment characteristics at both neighborhood and regional levels. Accounting for economic and socio-demographic cofounding variables, the authors found that innovative firms tend to locate more in dense, pedestrian-friendly, and transit accessible neighborhoods. The authors also found that a typical neighborhood in a compact region is more attractive for innovative firms than a sprawling region. The findings confirm the significance of urban form and its physical features on the notion of Innovation Districts theorized by previous studies.