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being an immigrant or living in a "slum" is a feature not a bug
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Forget New York City, This City is Where All the Artists Are Moving To

Forget New York City, This City is Where All the Artists Are Moving To | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

Lisbon, Portugal: The city investing in art in the middle of a financial crisis.

. . . 

This creative renaissance, it turns out, is not spontaneous, but rather the product of opportunistic public policy. In times of crisis, most governments take the knife to spending aimed at promoting art, design or publishing. But continental Europe’s westernmost capital decided instead to concentrate scarce resources on its “creative economy.”

. . .

And Lisbon’s has perks that established creative hubs just can’t touch. Unlike Barcelona, tourists haven’t completely overrun it. The cost of living is laughably cheap compared to London: $1800 for a small apartment and a $5 for beer, while in Lisbon it’s $470 and $1.50 respectively. And Berlin’s dreary skies can’t begin to compete with Lisbon’s 200 days of sunshine every year.

 

 

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Wow. I'm especially keen to check out Lisbon soon.

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Shareable: Region in Italy Reaches 30% Coop Economy

Shareable: Region in Italy Reaches 30% Coop Economy | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

The Emilia-Romagna region in Northern Italy is one of the richest in Europe, known for its high-end car manufacturing. While Emilia-Romagna is one of the most economically successful regions in Europe, it is also one of the most cooperative regions in the world. Nearly two of every three of its 4.5 million citizens are members of a cooperative. Cooperatives support around 30% of the region’s GDP, making it a stellar example of a large-scale cooperative economy. As with Mondragon Cooperative Corporation in Spain, the cooperative economy is strongly bolstered by networked relationships which also make cooperatives more resilient in economic crises. Learn more by watching the prezi below.

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Urban resilience in a time of change - Colombes

Urban resilience in a time of change - Colombes | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

Agrocité is an urban agriculture programme in the suburb of Colombes, which is an underprivileged town of 84,000 inhabitants near the city of Paris. The pilot programme that started in early 2012 is designed to introduce the dynamics of urban agriculture to community life. This will reconnect neighbours to one another and their living environment, empower them, and help revitalise a neglected urban context. The project includes a micro-experimental farm, community gardens, educational and cultural spaces, and devices for energy production, composting and rainwater recycling.

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Bicycle Superhighway in the city of Copenhagen

Bicycle Superhighway in the city of Copenhagen | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

As the Times reports, the city of Copenhagen has launched the first of 26 planned suburban commuter arteries built exclusively for bicycles: long, well-paved, carefully maintained bike paths to link its suburbs with the inner city, up to 14 miles long and requiring the cooperation of 21 separate municipal governments.


These are the numbers the Times reports. Remarkably, the story makes no mention of the extraordinary figure for cycling’s modal share in Copenhagen, so I will: fully 37 percent of Copenhagen residents — and 55 percent of downtown dwellers — use bikes as their primary mode of transportation.


Read more -> Three reasons why Copenhagen is the world leader in urban sustainability


Via Laurence Serfaty, Wa Gon, David Hodgson, Anne Caspari
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polis: Mapping the Suburbanization of Poverty

polis: Mapping the Suburbanization of Poverty | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

One of the fundamental issues in American urbanism is the changing geography of poverty. American cities are famous around the world for having abandoned large portions of the central core, largely unthinkable in Europe and much of the world. Even if suburban historians are doing their best to remind us that poverty — along with economic, social and ethnic diversity — has always existed in suburbs, shifts in recent decades are fundamentally changing metropolitan life in many parts of the country.

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Fourth Sector | Imagine Rural Development Initiative

Fourth Sector | Imagine Rural Development Initiative | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

Something’s definitely going on, because over the past ten years the boundaries between what is public (district, state, national), what is private (companies), and what belongs to voluntary organisations (non-profit) have become less and less distinct. Parallel to which the contours of an entirely new social arena have started to emerge – which Europe has been the first to dub the “for-benefit ” or “fourth” sector.

 

A sector populated by organisations, institutions and companies that are characterised by being self-financing – i.e. they operate on the free market – but who, on top of the bottom line, want to be measured and judged on the level of their social, ethical and environmental sense of responsibility.

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About ‘Money and Sustainability’ | Money and Sustainability

About ‘Money and Sustainability’ | Money and Sustainability | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

We tend to assume that we must have a single, monopolistic currency, funded through bank debt, enforced by a central bank. But we don’t need any such thing! In fact, the present system is outdated, brittle and unfit for purpose (witness the eurozone crisis). Like any other monoculture, it’s profitable at first but ultimately a recipe for economic and environmental disaster. The alternative is a monetary ‘ecosystem’, with complementary currencies alongside the conventional one.

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A Vertical Forest Is Growing in the Middle of One of Europe’s Dirtiest Cities

A Vertical Forest Is Growing in the Middle of One of Europe’s Dirtiest Cities | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

Denizens of Milan, Italy will have a brand new 2.5 acre forest smack in the middle of their city by the end of 2013. You might think that’s a city with its priorities straight. But this particular forest didn’t require the sacrifice of precious commercial real estate—because it’s of the vertical variety.

 

Brainchild of Italian architecture firm, Stefano Boeri Architetti, the Bosco Verticale (literally, “vertical forest” in English) is two residential apartment buildings peppered with cantilevered terraces. Each terrace is specially designed and engineered to support a small community of trees, shrubs, and other greenery.

 

When complete, Bosco Verticale will house 730 trees from three to six meters (10 to 20 feet) in height and irrigated primarily by the buildings’ grey water—runoff from baths, sinks, washing machines, and dishwashers. 5,000 shrubs and 11,000 plants will keep the trees company. A true forest.

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Land concentration, land grabbing and peopleʼs struggles in Europe

Land concentration, land grabbing and peopleʼs struggles in Europe | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

Until now the global phenomenon that is widely referred to as ?land grabbing' has been generally assumed to be happening only in the Global South, and with many reports claiming that it is concentrated in Africa and that the main land grabbers are Chinese, Indian and South Korean companies as well as the Gulf States. Transnational social movement and NGO campaigns have likewise tended to accept unquestioningly this general assumption that land grabbing is a phenomenon focused on countries in the South, especially African countries. By bringing Europe's land issues into focus, the present study stands to change the way we think of contemporary land grabbing in at least three fundamental ways.

 

First, land grabbing is not the only important and pressing land issue in the world today; the ongoing trend of 'generic' land concentration is just as significant and problematic. Second, land concentration and land grabbing do not only occur in developing countries in the South, but are trends that are currently underway in Europe as well. Third, the study shows that people's struggles against land concentration and land grabbing are also unfolding in Europe, suggesting that a truly transnational perspective on political struggle against contemporary enclosures is certainly warranted, if not urgently needed. 

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Austerity vs. Public Transportation

Austerity vs. Public Transportation | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

Barcelona’s Bicing bike sharing program is one of the world’s most successful and famous programs. Started in 2007, it uses a membership system that allows anyone with Barcelona residency, for a small yearly fee, to use the bright red and white bikes distributed throughout the city. This makes a huge difference to the population of one of the world’s most tourist-heavy cities, and offers its 150,000 local memberss an easy way to get around the city. But this month, the state of Catalonia has decided to dramatically hike fees for Bicing, more than doubling the cost for membership. When pressed on the issue, government representatives said that if people don’t like it, they should buy their own bike.


Austerity politics always come down hard on public transit, and these cuts come down hardest on forms of transportation (bike shares, walking, etc.) that have neither powerful lobbies nor massive industries. In the US, the Federal Government’s Surface Transportation Fund only gave a measly 2% of its budget to biking and walking services, despite the fact that more and more people in America are preferring these methods of transportation. Only 2%, that is, until this summer, when the new spending bill de-funded many of these already under-funded programs, leaving struggling states, forced to balance their budgets, to go their own with the most sustainable, practical and cheap public transit projects. Unsurprisingly, many of these programs are losing out.


hat can people do to fight for these public transit institutions? With Bicing, people are organizing a petition as well as a protest campaign to fight these cuts and try and save the program. But it has become clear we will need to see solutions that go beyond both government funding and private investment schemes.


Sharable

By Willie Osterweil

03 Dec 2012

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Skyfarming Prototype? 8-Story, Climbable Vertical Garden in Barcelona

Skyfarming Prototype? 8-Story, Climbable Vertical Garden in Barcelona | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

Architect Juli Capella was tasked by the city of Barcelona to design a vertical garden to cover a nearly 70-foot-high windowless wall (left over after an adjacent building was demolished).


Instead of creating a typical living wall that simply covered the existing surface with plants, he constructed a piece of architecture (or "vegitecture") that acts like any conventional building, with a door, stairs and floors. But unlike any other building, it has plants for walls.

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Abd Al Malik, a Rapper, Pushes for a New French Identity of Inclusion

Abd Al Malik, a Rapper, Pushes for a New French Identity of Inclusion | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

IN his early life, before he left the violent projects of Strasbourg, before he was acclaimed as a rapper and a poet, Abd Al Malik was a confusion of identities — “schizophrenic,” he says. A Catholic altar boy turned Muslim proselyte, he was at once thug and scholar, dealing hashish and reading philosophy, picking pockets after Sunday Mass.

 

As a teenager, he lost friends to heroin, murder and suicide; rattled and angry, he sought explanations in “On the Shortness of Life,” by the Greek thinker Seneca. At 16, Mr. Malik says, he renounced crime, burned everything he had bought with “dirty money” and fell in with a rigid Muslim sect. Later he gravitated to Sufism, the mystical strain of Islam.

...

“There’s really a lag between how France sees itself and what France really is,” he said, speaking with the same precise syllables and crisp consonants that distinguish his music. “So long as we haven’t realized that diversity is part of French identity, at a certain point we’re telling ourselves that a Frenchman, after all, is a white man, Christian, who’s between 25 and 45. And everything that doesn’t fit that description is tossed aside.”

 

France is “not capable of recognizing, directly, her own children,” he said. “From my point of view, this is our country’s major problem.”

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DIY Urbanism - Almere Oosterwold

MVRDV‘s proposal for an urban development in Almere Oosterworld, the Netherlands, is a template for a D.I.Y. project that puts power into the hands of neighborhoods and communities. This development strategy is bottom-up, inclusive and very intuitive to the needs of individuals and their communities. It allows the design to develop organically and over a stretch of time as needs change and neighborhoods grow. MVRDV writes that the proposal “is a revolution in Dutch urban planning as it steps away from governmental dictate and invites organic urban growth in which initiatives are stimulated and inhabitants can create their own neighbourhoods including public green, urban agriculture and roads”.

 

more - http://bit.ly/MvL7PX ht @mbauwens

 

 

 

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Are "Smart Cities" the New Paradigm for Development?

Are "Smart Cities" the New Paradigm for Development? | Arrival Cities | Scoop.it

The concept of smart cities has become more and more popular in the general public.


As the graph on the left testifies, during the last year it has been more mentioned on Twitter than other fashionable and development-related concepts (such as "digital economy" or "creative class"), and its trend is growing quicker.

 

The main reason, at least from a European perspective, is due to the choice of using this concept as a key policy instrument in reaching EU 2020 targets on climate change mitigation.

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