NYC has been the focal point for recurrent demonstrations over the last couple of weeks, with large, long marches, die-ins and rallies. This is not surprising, since NYC is the most populous city in the country. But even more than that, the urban environment — dense, centralized, vertical, walkable — creates spaces that are conducive for these protests to pick up steam. The existence of public spaces, such as Union Square and Washington Square Park, function as easily accessible rallying points. — america.aljazeera.com
The rhetoric of smart cities would be more persuasive if the environment that the technology companies create was actually a compelling one that offered models for what the city can be. But if you look at Silicon Valley you see that the greatest innovators in the digital field have created a bland suburban environment that is becoming increasingly exclusive — European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda for Europe
In a quiet, shady street in Rijswijk, the Netherlands, Koen Olthuis and the design team at Waterstudio are changing the world. From this deceptively nondescript headquarters, Waterstudio is designing the cities of the future. If Olthuis has his way, they will be safer, more flexible and more resilient than current cities. How will he do this? Olthuis is designing floating cities. — nextcity.org
Calling Los Angeles streets a “front door to the world and the place where public life and private enterprise connect,” Mayor Eric Garcetti and the city Department of Transportation released a strategic plan Monday aimed at making them safer and more accessible by 2025.
The 61-page report, titled “Great Streets for Los Angeles,” looks toward ending all pedestrian-related deaths, improving safety around public schools and changing the timing of streetlights [...] — Los Angeles Daily News
Included in the plan are initiatives to help the city become more bike-friendly, such as adding more bike corrals on the street and racks to city buses. This comes on the heels of new, state-wide legislation recently signed by Gov. Jerry Brown aimed to increase bike safety. Assembly Bill 1193 will...
Michael Bloomberg's Bloomberg Philanthropies revealed the winners of its first European edition of the Mayors Challenge. More than 150 top cities from 28 European nations entered the competition, which asked participants to send their most innovative ideas that address Europe's timely pressing issues like unemployment, energy efficiency, obesity, aging, and improving government efficiency. — bustler.net
The Information reports that Page started up a Google 2.0 project inside the company a year ago to look at the big challenges facing humanity and the ways Google can overcome them. Among the grand-scale plans discussed were Page's desire to build a more efficient airport as well as a model city. To progress these ideas to fruition, the Google chief has also apparently proposed a second research and development lab, called Google Y... — theverge.com
Conditions that have been agreed are relentlessly renegotiated at reserved matters stage. Good architects are employed to win outline planning, then ditched for a cheaper alternative; high-quality materials are substituted for flimsy plastic panels – all in the name of viability. — the guardian
When somebody comes to make your city smart, he never comes by himself...billions in growth doesn't come without standards and industry alliances. I have never seen so many standards and industry alliances as I am seeing in 'Smart Cities' and 'Internet of Things', and foundations too. — YouTube
Flooded with politicos and political junkies, Washington, D.C. often comes off as a city steeped in raw ambition. But the nation’s capital deserves to be known for something else: coolness. While “cool” might not be the first word that comes to mind when contemplating the latest standoff in Congress, D.C. nonetheless has a lot to offer those who call it home. — Forbes
As shocking as it is to look upon the rows and rows of makeshift encampments and thousands of roving, hopeless people, perhaps even more shocking is this: Los Angeles is the last major American city with a single district of anything approaching this magnitude of homelessness and extreme poverty [...] — LA Weekly
Rather than laying out exactly what it wants to buy (say, bike lockers), Barcelona is laying out six problems it wants to fix (such as reducing bike theft). Responses could involve buying things, but they might also suggest new services, regulatory changes or any other means of accomplishing the goal. Anyone around the world with a creative idea, including startup companies or even individuals, has a shot at a contract and all the market legitimacy that comes with that. — citylab.com
In a world where we are increasingly given the chance to customise our output, how do you orchestrate a planet where a Gangnam ringtone collides with the sound of a 1970s camera shutter from a smartphone, in a tube station resonating with Vivaldi to deter loitering, while the guy next to you shout-announces to some remotely interested party that he is "About to get on the tube! I said The! Tube! ... "? What is the future sound of cities? — theguardian.com
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