The University of Utah
College of Architecture + Planning
Kristin Reidelberger

Name: Kristin Reidelberger
Undergraduate Major: Contemporary Dance Performance and Choreography
Hometown: Chicago, IL suburbs and Milwaukee, WI

How did you discover urban planning?
I have always had a passion for exploring and experiencing the unique identity of a place. Having chosen to become a resident of many places, I have learned a great deal about the importance and impact of city planning. I grew up in the Chicago suburban sprawl, where streets seem to lead through cycles of the same place rather than take you anywhere you particularly want to go. I spent as much time in the city as much as I could- admiring the diversity of people and place, the uniqueness permitted, and the beauty of history meeting the future. I moved to Milwaukee for my undergraduate degree, and ended up living in Milwaukee for eight years, rounding out my understanding of that city, and watching it evolve and change. I also lived in a small rural town outside of Milwaukee for two years, and within the city of Chicago for a year. In moving to Salt Lake, I again have had an entirely new city, state, and culture to explore. Every city and town on Earth is different, and yet there are common requirements for communities to thrive. I have grown more and more intrigued by what makes a place healthy, vibrant, and unique, and in discovering the field of urban planning the light bulb definitely switched on for me.

Why did you choose the MCMP program at U of Utah?
Salt Lake is a fascinating city to me in that it has a smaller population than what I am used to, but is growing at a substantial rate. I see long-time residents being excited and upset by various changes happening in the city, and I see that there is a push/pull in terms of accepting the new growth versus preservation. I am interested in helping Salt Lake grow wisely, and it’s clear that the MCMP program at U of U is invested in that as well.

What are your career goals?
I’d like to continue to travel both as visitor and resident to research different planning strategies and implement positive changes in many places. I would also like to help cities grow sustainably while maintaining balance during periods of population influx and loss due to climate migration. I’m fascinated by so many aspects of urban planning, and I will hopefully have the opportunity to do a variety of work during my career.

Tell us one thing most people don’t know about you.
I have never been out of the country! I have always wanted to travel abroad, even at a very young age. Hopefully, that will change soon!