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
In the arid plains of the southern New Mexico desert, between the site of the first atomic bomb test and the U.S.-Mexico border, a new city is rising from the sand.
Planned for a population of 35,000, the city will showcase a modern business district downtown, and neat rows of terraced housing in the suburbs. It will be supplied with pristine streets, parks, malls and a church.
But no one will ever call it home. — CNN
Planned by the telecommunications and tech firm Pegasus Global Holdings, the CITE (Center for Innovation, Testing and Evaluation) is a $1 billion plan to build a model city to test out and develop new technologies.With specialized zones for agriculture, energy, and water treatment, the city would...
Cities can’t win. When they do well, people resent them as citadels of inequality; when they do badly, they are cesspools of hopelessness. In the seventies and eighties, the seemingly permanent urban crisis became the verdict that American civilization had passed on itself. Forty years later, cities mostly thrive, crime has been in vertiginous decline, the young cluster together in old neighborhoods [...] —and so big cities turn into hateful centers of self-absorbed privilege. — newyorker.com
“My growing interest in how cultural districts can shape cities led me to this new, exciting opportunity in New York City.” — New Cities Foundation, NY Times
Maxwell Anderson is returning to New York, to be Director of Grant Programs at The New Cities Foundation. Dallas' loss (and formerly Indianapolis' deeply felt loss) is good urbanism's gain. I am excited about this change in focus by someone who I know to be a great thinker.Press release from...
Binational urbanism has the potential to become one of the most interesting forms of life in the twenty-first century. — Bernd Upmeyer
The Amsterdam-based publishing house trancityxvaliz just released Bernd Upmeyer’s new book entitled “Binational Urbanism – On the Road to Paradise”.“Never before was the mobility of individuals higher than it is today. People work and live not only in different places, but often even in...
Across the continent, Chinese companies are building highways, railways, sports stadiums, mass housing complexes, and sometimes entire cities.
But China isn’t just providing the manpower to fuel quickly urbanizing African cities. It is exporting its own version of urbanization, creating cities and economic zones that look remarkably similar to Chinese ones. — qz.com
For decades, China’s government has tried to limit the size of Beijing, the capital, through draconian residency permits. Now, the government has embarked on an ambitious plan to make Beijing the center of a new supercity of 130 million people.
The planned megalopolis, a metropolitan area that would be about six times the size of New York’s, is meant to revamp northern China’s economy and become a laboratory for modern urban growth. — nytimes.com
Related stories:China’s "most influential architect" is not pleased with the state of Chinese urbanismBeijing mayor says air pollution makes his city "unlivable"China Moves to Ease Home-Registration Rules in Urbanization Push
But thanks to increased interest from buyers and less resistance from village governments, developers are constructing more new-urbanism-style homes in the burbs. “Millennials and boomers are demanding it,” explains Drew Williams-Clark, principal planner at the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning. — chicagomag.com
A new typology of XL-architecture is emerging in Istanbul, negating the urban context. These ‘Citadels-on-Steroids’ rapidly encroach on the city’s urban fabric. [...]
This might very well be the future of all cities. As city walls and state boundaries erode under late capitalism, the walls are only rebuilt at a smaller scale to maintain immunity from the chaos outside. — failedarchitecture.com
It's insane. Each city in the North is too small to fight against that. We can only drag some of that investment northwards if we work together — BBC News - Magazine
In England efforts have begun to corral the North's population of 15 million into a collective force that could begin to rival that of London and the South East. A minister for the Northern Powerhouse has been appointed and the initial/low hanging fruit would include, devolution of some fiscal...
The slum, of course, is the hottest button in urbanism. Beneath the cliché that half the world’s population lives in cities — and that urban populations will double by 2050 — is the fact that only bottom-up informal settlements, or slums, can absorb several billion new residents in the timeframe. [...]
URBZ is notable in that it offers a third way at looking at Dharavi — as both a failure and a better path to success than stillborn smart cities or other attempts at top-down instant urbanism. — nextcity.org
If ongoing discussions with the United States and others prove successful, sanctions affecting the Iranian economy will likely be lifted, exposing the country to a forceful wave of globalization. But the shift from isolation to inclusion has already begun to transform Tehran. [...]
It’s a city that, at this moment, is intensely influenced by international relations, shaping itself into a burgeoning urban hub. — citylab.com
Here is a constant refrain: Why is so much new building junk? [...]
The truth is that architects don’t have that much power. Architects don’t design most buildings; they are designed by developers or contractors working from cookie-cutter plans. Perhaps an architect signs off. [...] In any number of ways—our building codes, our housing policies, our preservation statutes—we systemically encourage bad building. — artsblog.dallasnews.com
Related:Rachel Slade dares to ask: "Why is Boston so ugly?"The new 5 over 1 Seattle, where "everything looks the same"Blair Kamin not impressed by Chicago's latest housing developmentsJeff Sheppard calls downtown Denver's new housing developments "meaningless, uninspiring"
municipal infrastructure is being expanded to include living creatures. In many ways, of course, this is simply the contemporary urbanization of a practice that goes back millennia. However, the ensuing juxtapositions – of 21st-century landscapes and cities being maintained not by high-tech machines or by specialty equipment but by neo-medieval groups of trained animals – can be quite jarring. Animal labour is once more becoming an explicit component of the modern metropolis — newscientist.com
The absolute premise, and conclusion, here is that human urbanism is ineluctably woven within all animal ecologies, and that harnessing inter-species relationships within urban systems can be advantageous for every bit of the food web. A few instances from the piece are:landscaping llamas for...
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