Last month, the journal Science published a special issue examining the challenges and opportunities of an urbanizing world. Titled “Urban Planet” and featuring an image of clouds wafting across skyscrapers in Dubai, the issue opened with an eye-catching statistic: “More than half of the world’s people now live in cities.”
Of course, that number would be even more impressive if it were actually true. — UNDark
According to the article, the statistic that half the world's population lives in cities is misleading. Many of these people live in towns and small urban enclaves, not the bustling metropolises conjured by the stat.The author argues that such thinking makes one overlook sprawling fringe...
From 1917 to 1991 in the former Russian Empire, and from 1945 to 1989 in the countries it dominated after the war, there was no real private ownership. No landowners, no developers, no “placemakers” - in half of Europe. Did this mean public space was done differently, and are attitudes to it different in those countries? [...] observed more closely, public space here is every bit as complex as it is elsewhere in Europe. — theguardian.com
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A group of fourth-year Ball State architecture students are refurbishing a former meth house in the Thomas Park-Avondale neighborhood in Muncie as a studio project.
The studio class is working with ecoREHAB, a local nonprofit that provides sustainable rehabilitation of housing and neighborhoods. “The whole goal is to revitalize the community more so than to earn money,” said Taylor Sheppard, a senior architecture major. — The Ball State Daily
This is the urban park of today. Unlike the neatly drawn public spaces of an earlier age, these parks are reclaimed from the discarded parcels of our cities: Stranded patches of woods, abandoned military bases and airports, storm-water systems, rail lines and bridges, places where scraps of land are pieced together like quilts or strung together like beads.
The experimentation is global. — National Geographic
Related stories in the Archinect news:A critical look at Downtown L.A.'s ambitious plans for two new public parksWhat if: Perkins Eastman's "Green Line" proposal turns Broadway into a 40-block park in the heart of ManhattanAs Garden Bridge procurement process is headed for review, London group...
The thorny task of comparing crime rates across the world is tricky because legal interpretations vary. Sweden's definition of rape is not the same as America’s, for example. Murder however should be easier to record because there is an identifiable victim, something that can be counted. But the way in which this is done in poorer, often more corrupt countries makes truly comparable statistics hard to pin down. Where there are inefficient public health systems or police, it is even harder. — the Economist
"Latin American and Caribbean countries suffer disproportionately compared with elsewhere, mainly because of inequality, poor rule of law, impunity and corrupt institutions that are infiltrated by drug cartels. Only two countries outside the region feature on either chart, South Africa and the...
The Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize 2016 is conferred on Medellín, the second largest city in Colombia after the capital Bogotá.
Having overcome challenges of uncontrolled urban expansion and years of violence due to social inequalities, Medellín has undergone a remarkable transformation over the past two decades. Through bold leadership, long-term plans and social innovation, the city’s leaders have tackled its most pressing issues and improved the economy... — Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize
The Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize is a bi-annual award give to a city to honor "outstanding achievements and contributions to the creation of liveable, vibrant and sustainable urban communities around the world."Organized by the Urban Redevelopment Authority and the Centre for Liveable...
As the number of people moving to cities continues to rise, with 66% of the global population expected to live in urban areas by 2050, it is critical to understand how urban living is affecting us — Urban Mind
Living in a concrete jungle has its pros and its cons, but how exactly does urban living affect mental wellbeing? A new cross-disciplinary project intents to find out by using a smartphone app called Urban Mind. The app is designed to monitor various aspects of a metropolitan environment...
This got us thinking about what it takes to build an ideal town: should pubs be on every residential corner or on the high street? How many trendy coffee shops are too many? Are libraries still a thing? We didn't have the answers to any of those questions, so we spoke to Matt Richards – a planner at property consultancy Bidwells – to find out what makes the perfect town. — VICE
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In 1997 two architects set out to rethink Lagos, an African megacity that had been largely abandoned by the state. Amid the apparent chaos and crime, they discovered remarkable patterns of organisation. Two decades later, Rem Koolhaas and Kunlé Adeyemi discuss the past, present and future of the city – and reveal why their own project never saw the light of day — theguardian.com
"...it was the ultimate dysfunctional city – but actually, in terms of all the initiatives and ingenuity, it mobilised an incredibly beautiful, almost utopian landscape of independence and agency." - Rem KoolhaasRelated stories in the Archinect news:Koolhaas guides viewers through bustling Lagos...
Graham Fink has been documenting the demolition sites of Shanghai for five years, trying to capture the state of flux during this period of rapid urbanisation. His Ballads of Shanghai exhibition is at London’s Riflemaker gallery until Sunday. — the Guardian
With an eye for the juxtaposition of graphic imagery and demolition sites, Graham Fink takes fascinating images of a city under the midst of mass transformations. His camera is drawn, in particular, to remnants of street art and commercial advertisements. For other depictions of the built...
Moore’s appreciation of Disneyland was notorious in an era when the ‘truthfulness’ of modern architecture was largely unquestioned. — places journal
"No architectural essay of the time foretold the preoccupations of postmodernism more memorably: “You Have to Pay” featured the very first architectural appreciation of Disneyland, which had opened just ten years earlier. Moore’s provocation would be upped three years later when Robert...
These urban realities include a population that will double in 25 years, a slum prevalence level of 61% (higher than any other region in the world), a labour force where 63% are in vulnerable employment, where congestion can equate to 2% of a country’s economy and where 400 million more people will need water connections in the next 20 years. [...]
people are being pushed out of rural areas that lack basic services and jobs, into cities which are simply not ready for them — mgafrica.com
More on emerging forms of urbanism in developing Africa:Africa's challenges and opportunities to get urbanization rightChinese Urbanism takes root in AfricaAdmire the diversity of African vernacular architecture in this growing online databaseA Look at Africa's Modernist Architecture
‘El mejor anuncio de la historia’, or ‘the best ad in history’ is a picture taken in February 2008, which neatly encapsulates several aspects of the city’s urban landscape: the formal, the informal and the promotional.
'[...]Around and in between the super bloques a carpet of slums has grown, an organism that now seems to bind the blocks together in some symbiotic relationship. These are the kind of hybrid forms that are developing in Latin American cities [...]’ — failedarchitecture.com
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Murray Low has passed on the sad news of the death of Edward Soja. I first heard him talk on Postmodern Geographies in 1995 – this would have been work that ended up in Thirdspace – and the talk really motivated me to examine the spatial aspects of Foucault and Lefebvre. — Progressive Geographies
"Los Angeles seems to break every rule of urban readability and regularity. it is no surprise, then, that Southern California has become a center for innovative and nontraditional urban theory and analysis." - Ed SojaThe Postmodern City / Bonaventure Hotel
This is important for Africa, where despite high urbanisation rates the development focus has been primarily rural. Consider Ghana. The country’s urban population has grown from four million in 1984 to more than 14 million today. Fifty one percent of Ghanaians now live in cities. While urbanisation rates vary across Africa, Ghana reflects an overall global trend towards a predominantly urban future.
Ghana demonstrates how cities can be highly productive in Africa. — qz.com
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