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Photographing mega-cities from 12,000 feet

Photographing mega-cities from 12,000 feet | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Photographer Vincent Laforet spent the early stages of 2015 photographing the likes of New York, Las Vegas, London, Sydney and Barcelona from a helicopter.


Tags: urban, megacities, unit 7 cities, images.


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Marianne Naughton's curator insight, December 6, 2015 10:19 PM

Great photo of city ... 

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Mapping the Sexism of Street Names in Major Cities

Mapping the Sexism of Street Names in Major Cities | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
In a study of seven world metros, only a little more than a quarter of the streets were named for women.

 

Tags: gender, mapping, urban, toponyms.


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New Old Town

New Old Town | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"Like many cities in Central Europe, Warsaw is made up largely of grey, ugly, communist block-style architecture. Except for one part:  The Old Town. Walking through the historic district, it’s just like any other quaint European city. There are tourist shops, horse-drawn carriage rides, church spires. The buildings are beautiful—but they are not original."


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aitouaddaC's curator insight, August 3, 2015 8:12 AM

This is a compelling podcast linking architecture, heritage, political ideology and the built environment.  How we preserve and create place is put on trial as to when something is benign, fabricated, authentic, or simply a complicated balance between opposing forces. 

 

Tags: planning, architecture, urban, place,

Beth Marinucci's curator insight, August 3, 2015 8:45 PM

This is a compelling podcast linking architecture, heritage, political ideology and the built environment.  How we preserve and create place is put on trial as to when something is benign, fabricated, authentic, or simply a complicated balance between opposing forces. 

 

Tags: planning, architecture, urban, place,

Yolanta Krawiecki's curator insight, August 7, 2015 5:30 PM

This is a compelling podcast linking architecture, heritage, political ideology and the built environment.  How we preserve and create place is put on trial as to when something is benign, fabricated, authentic, or simply a complicated balance between opposing forces. 

 

Tags: planning, architecture, urban, place,

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Urbanization in China

China's citizens are moving from the countryside into cities in record numbers, boosting the economy but making party leaders uneasy

 

Tags: economic, planning, urban, China, East Asia.


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François Arnal's curator insight, July 17, 2015 4:15 AM
Seth Dixon's insight:

A big portion of China's economic boom the last few decades has been linked to the transformation of what used to be a predominantly agrarian civilization to an economic engine fueled by rapid urbanization.  This 2011 video from the Economist is still highly relevant today.   

 

@Céline

Vincent Lahondère's curator insight, July 18, 2015 9:02 AM

Une courte vidéo de la revue The Economist

Lindley Amarantos's curator insight, August 6, 2015 3:54 PM

A big portion of China's economic boom the last few decades has been linked to the transformation of what used to be a predominantly agrarian civilization to an economic engine fueled by rapid urbanization.  This 2011 video from the Economist is still highly relevant today.   

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Political Symbolism in the Religious Landscape

This is a great juxtaposition of communal identities. Before becoming a part of Canada, this was the Cathedral of St. James. As a part of the British Empire, places such as Victoria Square became a part of the Montreal landscape. In what appears to me as a symbolic strike back against the British Monarchy's supremacy, this Cathedral is renamed Marie-Reine-du-Monde (Mary, Queen of the World). The fact that the Hotel Queen Elizabeth is looming overhead only heightens the tensions regarding whose queen reigns supreme; this isn't the real issue. The dueling queens served as a proxy for tensions between British political control and French cultural identity in Quebec several generations ago.


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, July 12, 2015 4:43 PM

I was recently in Montreal; my last few Instagram posts aren't the prettiest pictures of my time in Canada.  I tried to select images that represented geographic concepts and would be the things I'd mention if we were on a walking tour of the city. 


TagsCanadasocial media, urban, economic, images, placeculture, landscape, tourism

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This brilliant illustration shows how much public space we've surrendered to cars

This brilliant illustration shows how much public space we've surrendered to cars | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
How lopsided the the proportions of an urban street corner really are.

 

Most roads in the US are built for cars, not for pedestrians. Whether we're happy or unhappy with this, most of us are aware of it.

But this brilliant illustration, made by Swedish artist Karl Jilg and commissioned by the Swedish Road Administration, shows just how extreme the situation truly is — even in an urban business district that's designed with pedestrians in mind. 


Tags: urban, transportation, planning, art.


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The largest city in Brazil is running dangerously low on water

The largest city in Brazil is running dangerously low on water | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Thanks to the worst drought in eight decades, millions of people in São Paulo are facing water outages.

 

Tags: Brazil, urban, water, urban ecology, climate change, environment depend, sustainability, agriculture, food production.


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Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, November 25, 2014 12:49 PM

Brazil’s largest city, Sao Paulo, which provides one third of the countries GPD, is now running low or water due to one of the worst droughts in 8 years. There are more than 21 million people in this city and 13 million of them are facing water outages. If it doesn't rain soon, the city could face a collapse. The city has blamed the drought of lack of water in the vapor clouds that the amazon usually provides to the city. They also blame it on deforestation and global warming. President Dilma Rousseff has questioned the cities misusage of their water supply, claiming that the city mismanaged their water supply.  

Lydia Tsao's curator insight, March 23, 2015 10:16 AM

This shows just how important water is the human race. It also shows how humans have no sense of urgency in conserving water until it's too late. The saying "you never know a good thing until it's gone" applies in this case. The Brazilian government did not take any sufficient measures to conserve water until it realized how depleted the reservoir is. This event demonstrates the environmental impact of  water depletion on humans, and how humans have such a huge impact on the geographical landscape on Earth. As seen in the picture above, many greens turned yellow as a result of the lowering water levels. The river beds are soon going to be overgrown by shrubbery as water no longer exists there. These are all results of a combination of natural (lack of rain) and human causes of resource depletion.

Luis Cesar Nunes's curator insight, September 30, 2015 7:19 AM

water

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America is rapidly aging in a country built for the young

America is rapidly aging in a country built for the young | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"Although we seldom think about them this way, most American communities as they exist today were built for the spry and mobile. We've constructed millions of multi-story, single-family homes where the master bedroom is on the second floor, where the lawn outside requires weekly upkeep, where the mailbox is a stroll away. We've designed neighborhoods where everyday errands require a driver's license. We've planned whole cities where, if you don't have a car, it's not particularly easy to walk anywhere — especially not if you move gingerly.

This reality has been a fine one for a younger country. Those multi-story, single-family homes with broad lawns were great for Baby Boomers when they had young families. And car-dependent suburbs have been fine for residents with the means and mobility to drive everywhere. But as the Baby Boomers whose preferences drove a lot of these trends continue to age, it's becoming increasingly clear that the housing and communities we've built won't work very well for the old."


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Alexandra Piggott's curator insight, October 18, 2014 6:48 PM

This is also an issue in Australia where the overwhelming majority of people live in single story dwellings and are very car reliant.

Joshua Mason's curator insight, January 28, 2015 8:59 PM

I can definitely see this as a real problem. Both my Uncle and my Great Uncle moved their condos from ones that had numerous steps to climb to the second floor to more elder-friendly options. My Great Uncle even went a step further to move him and his wife to a senior living community, where there food, entertainment, etc. is all provided within an enclosed neighbourhood with other people of their age group. More of these communities that act like oversized retirement homes could be the answer. They give the illusion of suburban living, something the baby boomers liked, while providing the accessibility they need.

Dawn Haas Tache's curator insight, April 8, 2015 12:27 PM

APHG- HW Option 1

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The Growth of Megacities

The Growth of Megacities | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"For the first time in human history, more of the world’s 6.8 billion people live in cities than in rural areas. That is an incredible demographic and geographic shift since 1950 when only 30 percent of the world’s 2.5 billion inhabitants lived in urban environments.

 

The world’s largest cities, particularly in developing countries, are growing at phenomenal rates. As a growing landless class is attracted by urban opportunities, meager as they might be, these cities’ populations are ballooning to incredible numbers.

 

A May 2010 Christian Science Monitor article on “megacities” predicted that by 2050, almost 70 percent of the world’s estimated 10 billion people—more than the number of people living today—will reside in urban areas. The social, economic and environmental problems associated with a predominantly urbanized population are considerably different from those of the mostly rural world population of the past."


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Whitney Souery's curator insight, May 28, 2014 6:48 PM

The majority of megacities are in the developing world, with the exception of places like New York and Tokyo, best showing how the face of the world is changing. Developing countries are on their paths to becoming major powers, such as Calkutta for example. As an enlarging city, more and more citizens are flocking to the abundance of jobs in the city which thus increases India's development as a result of the growing city and thus leads to a cycle of growth as demand for more jobs increases as the city grows. Megacities are thus a symbol of the developing world and can be used in human geography as symbols of development. 

L.Long's curator insight, August 28, 2015 6:08 AM

mega cities

Aidan Lowery's curator insight, March 21, 12:06 PM
unit 7
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In Pictures: Crackdown in Brazil's favelas

In Pictures: Crackdown in Brazil's favelas | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
The Brazilian government's 'pacification' initiative has led to drug busts and shootouts in Rio's favelas.

 

Just a few months before Rio de Janeiro welcomes visitors for the World Cup, and two years before it hosts the Olympics, security within the city remains a major issue.  The government currently promotes the policy of "pacification", where security forces engage in raids, drug busts, and even gunfights with suspected gang members. This pacification policy is supposed to pave the way for the development of long-neglected favelas in Rio, Brazil's second-biggest city and home to 11 million people.  However, many of the favelas remain in the hands of an army of drug dealers and criminals who are not willing to step down or be pacified.


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 2, 2014 9:30 PM

Tags: Brazil, urban, squatter, narcotics, socioeconomic, neighborhood.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, April 28, 2014 10:41 AM

unit 7

Mark Hathaway's curator insight, October 1, 2015 6:29 AM

I believe that absolutely no one is surprised that right before an international event, the hosting city is cracking down on its problem areas. I am skeptical of the Brazilin governments  promise to develop the long neglected Favelas. After Rio finishes hosting the 2016 Summer games, the government will once again neglect the Favelas. There will no longer be an incentive for the government to care about the favelas. The eyes of the world will be off the  city and things can return to normal. The only losers in this equation are the actual residents of these slums. Once again the promise of better days will ripped  from them. An added injury is that there informal economy will have been destroyed. While life in an informal economy is hard by any measure, it is still a way of making a living. The increased police presence will destroy that way of life and replace it with empty promises.  

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Our future in cities

Our future in cities | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Humanity's future is the future of cities. Explore the crowded favelas, greened-up blocks and futuristic districts that could shape the future of cities -- and take a profane, hilarious side trip to the suburbs.

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Nancy Watson's curator insight, March 5, 2014 8:08 PM

Cities are changing the world at a rapid rate.

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Historical Metropolitan Populations of the United States

Historical Metropolitan Populations of the United States | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"The graph and tables on this page attempt to show how the urban hierarchy of the United States has developed over time. The statistic used here is the population of the metropolitan area (contiguous urbanized area surrounding a central city), not the population of an individual city. Metropolitan area population is much more useful than city population as an indicator of the size and importance of a city, since the official boundaries of a city are usually arbitrary and often do not include vast suburban areas. For example, in 2000 San Antonio was the 10th largest city in the U.S., larger than Boston or San Francisco, but its Metro Area was only ranked about 30th. The same thing was happening even back in 1790: New York was the biggest single city, but Philadelphia plus its suburbs of Northern Liberties and Southwark made it the biggest metro area."


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Paige Therien's curator insight, February 3, 2014 11:29 AM

This information is a helpful illustrator for someone who knows about the geography and history of the United States.  It is important to note the use of "metropolitan populations" rather than "city populations" within particular city borders; as the creator states, "boundaries of a city are usually arbitrary".  In other words, the information that can be given from a "city" do not tell the whole story.  Metropolitan areas, even if spanning out of city borders, share similar local culture dynamics, industry, and infrastructure as the core city.  If one was to just examine the cities and not the entire metropolitan areas of the Northeast Megalopolis, they would be missing a huge part of the puzzle. Depending on the time period, the demanded resources, and the available technologies heavily influence how metropoloitan areas work, grow, and interact with others.   This can be seen in the charts and tables.  For example, the availability of the automobile and other transportation methods deeply affected how people and industry move and how metropolitan areas influence and interact with one another.

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 17, 2014 10:26 AM

Comparing and contrasting numbers is a huge part of todays world. Looking at this chart, it indicates the size of the population of the whole metropolitan area. The difference in size of cities and of areas differs greatly and the examples provided can show how the area of a city is different that its Metro Area ranking.

Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, April 8, 2015 1:55 PM

I was a little confused by this graph at first, as I thought it was measuring population rather than the ranking of the respective metro areas. It is still just as telling, however, even if it is not measuring population. Despite the fact that the lines get a bit jumbled at times, it really is a fascinating graph to look at. It is representative of some tangible and traceable geographic trends that occurred as a result of politics or economics. It is especially interesting to note the decrease in rank of many northeastern metro areas and their replacement by metro areas in the western or central parts of the country. This is, of course, symbolic of the westward expansion of the country during the mid to early 1800s and the decline of the northeast as the dominant population center of the country. 

 

There are some things in particular that are interesting to note as an historian. For instance, New York's almost perfectly constant place as the largest metro area in the country says a lot about where the country is centered economically and socially. The rapid emergence of Los Angeles as a major metro area in the early 1900s speaks to the new wave of immigration that was occurring at that time. These trends, though not shown on or accompanied by a map, are very telling. Anyone with a basic knowledge of geography and U.S. history can see why certain things trend the way that they do. This graph also reinforces my belief that geography is an absolutely pivotal part of history. It is important to know where things are when you are talking about them in an historical context, or else you will have no visual reference or background and events may seem confusing or unclear. 

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The 11 Most Resilient Cities In America

The 11 Most Resilient Cities In America | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
The Rockefeller Foundation's resiliency challenge will give 11 American cities support to improve their ability to bounce back from disaster.

As more of the world's population moves into urban areas, and climate change increases the likelihood of flooding and extreme weather, cities all over the globe will need to strengthen their ability to withstand disasters.

This year, the Rockefeller Foundation is giving a few lucky cities a push with its 100 Resilient Cities challenge, which aims to give metropolises support to design and implement disaster contingency plans.


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ParadigmGallery's curator insight, December 5, 2013 3:52 PM

Interesting , informative post....

By nature, a city's ability to weather disaster is a design issue, one with plenty of potential for design solutions.....

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The North American City

Geography of the United States & Canada

 

Tags: urban, prezi, planning, urbanism, architecture, North America.


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Rust Belt Rebirth Through Gentrification?

It’s become difficult to afford urban living in places like San Francisco, New York or even Portland, but there is an alternative. In Rust Belt cities like Pittsburgh, Buffalo and Cincinnati, you can buy or rent for about 1/10th the price.

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Nicholas Widaman's curator insight, September 7, 2015 4:54 PM

This clip talks about how people are "migrating" to more industrial based cities because the rent is so cheap.

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 6, 2015 4:24 PM

I like this idea of gentrification, meaning you rebuild and renovate something that is old, dilapidated, and really not worth fixing up. Renovating places like this brings a whole new atmosphere to the area, it brings it to life, a life it once had that it lost. Renovating these areas is also probably good, because it raises the value of the area and higher value areas may just attract people to come see. Also, fixing up old restaurants, bars or other forms of entertainment might be enticing to people that are local and far away to check out what is new. Also, in general it will bring new economy to the area, renovating means construction jobs, finished construction jobs lead to new jobs because something can open in a newly renovated building and that new business will need employees. 

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, April 27, 12:39 PM
unit 7
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The science of slums - Geographical

The science of slums - Geographical | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
In an edited extract from his new book, Danny Dorling, professor of human geography at the University of Sheffield, argues that the idea of the population bomb is a fallacy and that the human population is checking its rise without the need for a grand plan

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Jose Soto's curator insight, August 5, 2015 9:39 PM

This essay is written by a critic of Thomas Malthus and could serve as a bridge to discuss issues in a population unit and an urban unit.  In a nutshell, Dorling feels that that Malthusian-like fears and assumptions about the proliferation of slums are unfounded; this is a good reading that can spark some conversation in a college seminar. 

 

Tags: declining populations, population, demographic transition model, urban, megacities, squatter.

geographynerd's curator insight, August 9, 2015 2:26 AM

This essay is written by a critic of Thomas Malthus and could serve as a bridge to discuss issues in a population unit and an urban unit.  In a nutshell, Dorling feels that that Malthusian-like fears and assumptions about the proliferation of slums are unfounded; this is a good reading that can spark some conversation in a college seminar. 

 

Tags: declining populations, population, demographic transition model, urban, megacities, squatter.

L.Long's curator insight, August 28, 2015 6:07 AM

mega cities 

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Urbanization in China

China's citizens are moving from the countryside into cities in record numbers, boosting the economy but making party leaders uneasy

 

Tags: economic, planning, urban, China, East Asia.


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François Arnal's curator insight, July 17, 2015 4:15 AM
Seth Dixon's insight:

A big portion of China's economic boom the last few decades has been linked to the transformation of what used to be a predominantly agrarian civilization to an economic engine fueled by rapid urbanization.  This 2011 video from the Economist is still highly relevant today.   

 

@Céline

Vincent Lahondère's curator insight, July 18, 2015 9:02 AM

Une courte vidéo de la revue The Economist

Lindley Amarantos's curator insight, August 6, 2015 3:54 PM

A big portion of China's economic boom the last few decades has been linked to the transformation of what used to be a predominantly agrarian civilization to an economic engine fueled by rapid urbanization.  This 2011 video from the Economist is still highly relevant today.   

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City Centers Are Doing Better than Inner Suburbs

City Centers Are Doing Better than Inner Suburbs | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

A new report tracks demographic trends across 66 U.S. metro areas.  The report provides comprehensive evidence for Aaron Renn's "new donut" model of cities (pictured in above image, on the right). Renn's model proposes that city centers and outer-ring suburbs are doing well economically, but inner-ring suburbs are struggling with a new influx of poverty."

 

Tags: urban, economic, urban models, APHG.


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Michael Amberg's curator insight, May 26, 2015 11:09 PM

This shows the changes in urban geography and how the world is changing due to all the new technology available now.

Bella Reagan's curator insight, May 26, 2015 11:33 PM

Urban unit

Summary

This article goes in to depth on a newer model on cites called the donut model, as pictured similar to a donut. The donut model was created by Aaron Renn, and it shows urban development recently in cities. The center of the city is grownign economically and falling. There is an influx of people moving in , resulting in an increase of poverty too. Also more educated people are moving in like young newly educated individuals.

insight

The new structure of cities forming is a change from the old. With cities now developing bigger and more industrial, there are many opportunities for people for work in the center of the cit. however, many people may want the jobs but can't get them, so many of those in poverty live in the city centers in search of economic opportunities. It is also interesting to see the status of the people changing the in the city center with that also more young educated people move to city centers, most likely in search of job opportunities. This new way of urban development is modernizing the work system.

Shane C Cook's curator insight, May 27, 2015 8:44 AM

More and more the urban stage is filling and cities are becoming once again the next big thing. After WW2 suburbs became intensively popular but now since a change in personnel views people prefer the city more.

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40 Percent Of The World's Cropland Is In Or Near Cities

40 Percent Of The World's Cropland Is In Or Near Cities | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Just how much of the world's cropland can we really call urban? That's been a big mystery until now.

 

Now, a study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters has an answer: Somewhere around 1.1 billion acres is being cultivated for food in or within about 12 miles (20 kilometers) of cities. Most of that land is on the periphery of cities, but 16.6 percent of these urban farms are in open spaces within the municipal core.


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Evan Margiotta's curator insight, March 20, 2015 2:42 PM

This is a perfect application of how Von Thunen model still applies today. Von Thunen mapped how crops were distributed around cites. The crops near the city were labor intensive while the crops farther away from the city were labor extensive. Von Thunen's model is often disputed today in a world with such fast transportation, but this study shows that it still applies today. Unit 5 Agriculture

Ellen Van Daele's curator insight, March 22, 2015 3:34 PM

This research explores the concept of urban agriculture and the water supply needed and used. It came up with surprising results that state that 80% of urban agriculture is in the developing world and 40% of urban agriculture is in or near cities.  

 

The research also covered water supply, stating that most of urban agriculture relies on irrigation. This is especially true in South Asia, and since the water resources are already scarce, the farmers have to compete for water with the government.

Raychel Johnson's curator insight, March 22, 2015 7:55 PM

Summary: This article is mostly about how much of our agriculture is grown within 20 miles of a city. It turns out 40% of agriculture is grown in this proximity of a city, and this mostly occurs with irrigated agriculture in South Asia. Most of these urban farms are in the developing world as well. 

 

Insight: This article relates to the von Thunen model because it directly talks about the rings that occur around a city, although it is a skewed version of it. I think this is also a good example of how cities have changed since the developing of the von Thunen model, showing that developed countries are supporting the idea of urban agriculture. 

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Cityscapes of Chicago

Cityscape Chicago II is a personal timelapse piece that I have worked on periodically over the past two years. The inspiration behind the project ties similarly with the original piece. As the city of Chicago continues to change, my fascination with it grows as well. The goal for me is always to capture the city in a unique way from new perspectives, and to continue exploring it.

 

Tags: Chicago, urban, place, landscape,  video.


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, November 12, 2014 8:08 AM

A little closer to my home and workplace, here is a similar video about Providence, Rhode Island.

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This Is The Next Generation Of Global Cities

This Is The Next Generation Of Global Cities | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Cities in lower-income countries are rapidly catching up with the world's top business capitals, according to a new report.

Chicago-based consulting firm A.T. Kearney is predicting the next generation of global cities, based on the speed with whi...

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The Most And Least Sprawling Cities In America

The Most And Least Sprawling Cities In America | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"Tracking changes in the shape of American cities over 10 years reveals which cities pack the most into a small space, but don't worry, sprawlers: Los Angeles shows you can change your fate."


Today’s nearly 314 million U.S. residents will expand to 401 million in less than 40 years. Wherever you fall on the cultural spectrum between country and city mouse, the fact remains that we simply won’t be able to use up resources the way we do now in sprawling suburbs shaped by car culture.  See also this infographic depicting those with the worst sprawl. 

 

Tags: density, sustainability, housing, urban, planning, unit 7 cities. 


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Geofreak's curator insight, April 3, 2014 1:35 PM

Ruimtelijk ordening, stedelijke gebieden

VS

L.Long's curator insight, April 15, 2014 6:57 PM

Urban  Dynamics

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Dubai's Growth

Dubai's Growth | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

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steve smith's curator insight, March 31, 2014 4:03 AM

Great for tourism development

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 1, 2014 10:48 AM

This series of pictures shows the extremely rapid growth of Dubai. An extremely wealthy city, the oil richness of Dubai has allowed for it to grow at an unprecedented rate from a desert to a sprawling metropolis. Such an impressive city springing up in a desolate desert speaks to how much resources can dictate where and how city growth occurs.

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 14, 2014 5:13 PM

 Dubai has drastically changed throughtout it's time before the globalization boom and was one of the only cities to be impacted positively by globalization. As you can see from the depiction that Dubai in 1991 was a deserted place and then in 2005 it transformed into becoming somewhat of a city. In 2012 this city drastically transformed in order to help the globalization process and the whole city in general was trasformed into a mega city.

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9 Reasons the U.S. Ended Up So Much More Car-Dependent Than Europe

9 Reasons the U.S. Ended Up So Much More Car-Dependent Than Europe | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Understanding mistakes of the past can help guide U.S. transportation policy in the future.

 

In 2010, Americans drove for 85 percent of their daily trips, compared to car trip shares of 50 to 65 percent in Europe. Longer trip distances only partially explain the difference. Roughly 30 percent of daily trips are shorter than a mile on either side of the Atlantic. But of those under one-mile trips, Americans drove almost 70 percent of the time, while Europeans made 70 percent of their short trips by bicycle, foot, or public transportation.  The statistics don't reveal the sources of this disparity, but there are nine main reasons American metro areas have ended up so much more car-dependent than cities in Western Europe.


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Kendra King's curator insight, January 28, 2015 7:51 PM

According to this article, “U.S. (transportation) planners” look to Europe for inspiration as the planners try to decrease Americans’ “car dependency.” Instead of giving answers about how to solve the “car dependency” issue, the author provided nine reasons for why Europeans walk and bike more. Ideas like how the European infrastructure was built (i.e their zoning laws, highways, and biking/pedestrian lanes) were discussed. I found the implication that European’s were able to walk more because residential areas and businesses were intermixed the most interesting of all these reasons. It could never really matter because most of America’s land is already developed, but it did make me remember an earlier study mentioned in the article in which 70% of Americans wouldn’t walk a mile when they could. Triggering this just made me think that intermixing our buildings wouldn’t matter because we are too lazy to walk. Some may come back with the idea that a lack of relaxed pedestrian and bike lanes prohibit this option. However, with the amount of sidewalks around, I just keep thinking it all goes back to how much we exercise (which isn’t much). So honestly, it is an unhealthy attitude that planners need to change. Meaning some drastic action would need to occur in order to actually change people’s habits.

 

 More drastic ideas like decreasing government subsidies on oil, taxing cars, and implementing policies that “shifted behavior” (i.e. no parking zones) were also explained. However with oil companies and car industries around, I don’t actually see lobbyist letting that happening in the short term. Ironically, the article mentioned that the reason U.S. planners were thinking about how to change transportation was because the model the county uses is “unstainable.” This means the transportation system cannot be maintained for either “environmental, social, or economic reasons” (see included link for definition). Thinking about these factors, I just kept coming back to oil. Environmentally it is a fixed resource, socially people want less of it due to climate change, and economically it is typically more costly. What this all means is that an alternative energy source is needed. When that eventually happens, America will probably believe the transportation system is sustainable again regardless of “urban sprawl” and lack of “public transportation.” I say this because the author pointed out how America thought itself stable during the 80’s and 90’s when energy prices were low thereby implying the bigger issue is the oil needed to change people’s behavior. 

 

Overall, the author did provide an in-depth list that made me pay attention to the cultural and government differences between America and Europe from the way space interacts with these regions.

 

*http://environment.transportation.org/environmental_issues/sustainability/#bookmarksubSustainableTransportation

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, February 4, 2015 6:41 PM

 A big reason why people are more car dependant in America is because we are a lazy nation.  Americans are always looking for the easy way to accomplish things, so if you can drive a mile to work in 2 minutes or walk in 15, its almost guarenteed that the American is walking! This is obviously a general term and does not apply to all Americans but a vast majority would opt for the vehicle.  As someone who has taken several trips to Europe, people there are in far better shape than in America and i'm sure that fitness along with better eating habits attribute to that.  

Another reason I believe America is more dependant than Europe on cars is because it is far easier and cheaper to travel via train or subway in Europe.  Train stations and public transport in America are expensive and only take you to highly populated areas while the trains in Europe will take you all over the continent.

 

Gene Gagne's curator insight, November 18, 2015 2:40 PM

This has major impact on health issues, because nobody wants to walk or bike anymore which most of us did until 16 years old, it is a good form of exercise and can keep a persons body weight down. Which would lead to less health issues. Also the pollution from the vehicles and illegal dumping of tires and batteries and oil which leads to environmental problems. Socially we would meet more people and even see more of our surroundings if we drove less. Economically we as individuals would save money by not driving or would we? We would save on gas, licenses, maintenance, but on the other hand our renewal of licenses, registration, and even taxes on the vehicle help support our schools, busing and other community projects. This funding would be cut and therefore taxes will rise on something else we would end up paying for. I personally just think as Americans we drive everywhere and spend less time taking bikes, walks even skateboards all over the city which we loved to do as teenagers. I don't expect to be rollerblading or skateboarding at an older age but why do we stop at 16. It is because we are allowed to under the law to drive and everyone can't wait until high school to get their license. Once we give up our bikes and rollerblades, skateboards, walks it is hard to go back to it.

Rescooped by Karen Moles Rose from Geography Education
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Income inequality seen in satellite images from Google Earth

Income inequality seen in satellite images from Google Earth | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

Nice visual on differences in income, with associated paper.  No stats needed here; a simple exploratory/observational curiosity is all you need.  A great starter for classroom discussions/lab activities. Start with this primer where you can see the distinct difference.


Via Seth Dixon
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Christian Madison's curator insight, January 13, 2014 7:28 PM

Well first of all I'd have to think on the bright side of life on the poor side. And on the other side, the rich side, I'd have to not take things for granted. On the poor side you'd have to use everything to it's limit and not waste a bit. While on the rich side it doesn't really matter that much.

Vivica Juarez's comment, January 13, 2014 8:16 PM
@Sherryn Kottoor made some excellent points about the pictures. In the diagram, it shows the poor vs. the rich. It clearly proves how there is a big difference between the two. The rich have more access to things, that the poor don't. The poor are also not as fortunate when it comes to living and education.
Marcelle Searles's curator insight, January 25, 2014 4:47 AM

useful for Year 8 and Year 11 Geography units.