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thoughts, ideas + dialogues on urban revitalization, smart growth + neighborhood development
Curated by Lauren Moss
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The Cities We Want: Resilient, Sustainable, and Livable

The Cities We Want: Resilient, Sustainable, and Livable | green streets | Scoop.it

Resilience is the word of the decade, as sustainability was in previous decades. No doubt, our view of the kind and quality of cities we as societies want to build will continue to evolve and inspire a new goal. Surely we have not lost our desire for sustainable cities, with footprints we can globally and locally afford, even though our focus has rightly been on resilience.

It speaks to the question: what is the city we want to create in the future? What is the city in which we want to live? Certainly that city is sustainable and resilient, so our cities are still in existence after the next 100-year storm, now apparently due every few years...


And yet: as we build this vision we know that cities must also be livable. Indeed, we must view livability as the third indispensible—and arguably most important—leg supporting the cities of our dreams: resilient + sustainable + livable.

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ParadigmGallery's curator insight, May 13, 2013 2:31 PM

We thank you, Lauren Moss, for the interesting post. The post speaks to the three buzz words for our cities now and in the future...livable, resilient, sustainable....

 

New Yorkers exhibited a lot of personal and psychological resilience after Hurricane Sandy—they picked themselves up and started again, often rebuilding their lives in the same spot. This is true all over: people are resilient in the face of hard times..learn more

ParadigmGallery's comment, May 13, 2013 2:32 PM
interesting post....TY
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What Makes a Great City: A General Theory of Walkability

What Makes a Great City: A General Theory of Walkability | green streets | Scoop.it

City engineers have turned our downtowns into places that are easy to get to but not worth arriving at.


In Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time (public library), city planner Jeff Speck, who spent four years leading the design division of the National Endowment for the Arts working directly with a couple hundred mayors to help solve their greatest city-planning challenges, turns a perceptive eye towards what makes a great city and how we might be able to harness the power of a conceptually simple, practically complex, immeasurably far-reaching solution in improving the fabric and experience of urban life.


Speck outlines a “General Theory of Walkability,” focusing on the four key factors of making a city attractive to pedestrians: 'it must be useful, safe, comfortable, and interesting. Each of these qualities is essential an none alone is sufficient...'


Learn more about urban livability, how to create the conditions that enable pedestrian-oriented development, and the benefits of this approach to urban spaces to the economic, environmental, and cultural health of a city at the article link...

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What Your Skyline Says About Your City

What Your Skyline Says About Your City | green streets | Scoop.it
The physical space reveals something deeper about a place.

Found in places like Vancouver, Sao Paulo, and Buenos Aires, this is the kind of skyline that gets urbanists giddy. These cities feature high-density cores with 24/7 activity, and residents rarely leave the urban core. Commenters have noted that Vancouver’s residential centralization policies may have actually worked too well, crowding out the middle-class, as the district’s desirability has pushed prices sky-high. Nevertheless, the city consistently ranks near the top of global Quality of Life surveys, as high-density living translates to good public transit and easy access to parks and other recreational opportunities.

Read the complete article to learn more about ten distinct “Skyline Types” that characterize a great number of the world’s great (and not-so-great) cities...

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Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary all rank in top five on list of world’s most liveable cities

Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary all rank in top five on list of world’s most liveable cities | green streets | Scoop.it
Three Canadian cities have again cracked the top five on a ranking of the world’s most liveable places. In the latest report from the Economist Int (#Vancouver is #3 on the 2012 Most Livable Cities in the World!

 

In the latest report from the Economist Intelligence Unit, Vancouver ranked third, followed by Toronto and Calgary in fourth and fifth respectively. The Canadian cities were bested only by Vienna in second and Melbourne, which topped The Economist’s Liveability Ranking.

The annual survey of 140 cities uses more than 30 factors to gauge the state of healthcare, education, infrastructure, stability, culture and environment — rendering a score out of 100.

Vancouver lost marks only for petty crime rates, availability of quality housing and congested road networks, with report authors citing a series of infrastructure projects such as the new Evergreen transit line “that will no doubt have a long-term benefit, but in the short-term they can be disruptive.”

 

The results vary little from the last ranking released six months ago, with Vancouver maintaining the third spot after slipping from first place in 2011.

Most of the top-tier countries are separated by fractions of a percentage — the first-ranked Melbourne is scored 97.5, only 1.8 points higher than 10th-place Auckland, N.Z. The Economist Information Unit uses the ranking to provide suggestions on how businesses should compensate employees working abroad in cities “where living conditions are particularly difficult.”

It’s one of several studies of its kind, but economic development experts in the listed Canadian cities say The Economist report’s catering to business communities could lead to tangible benefits...

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Mehakpreet Kaur's curator insight, March 22, 11:15 PM

This is something I want to read later and share with my inquiry group

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Top 10 best and worst cities to live | SmartPlanet

Top 10 best and worst cities to live | SmartPlanet | green streets | Scoop.it
A new ranking measures city characteristics like sprawl, green space, and pollution to determine livability.

The Economist Intelligence Unit — the city rankings specialists — has a new list claiming the best cities to live. And they have an interesting new livability metrics to judge the world’s cities.

The rankings combined EIU’s popular “Liveability Index” with a new measure that focuses on spatial characteristics. The “Spatially Adjusted Livability Index” takes into account seven characteristics:

 

-Sprawl: using the ”estimated relation between the metropolitan region’s surface and its total population, the overall coherence of the metropolitan form and an estimate of the extent of low density urban fabric.”

-Green space: based on ”the distribution of green spaces within the metropolitan region, the number of local green spaces and the number of metropolitan scale green spaces.”

-Natural assets: using “Google Earth satellite imagery and information from Open Street Map to assign points to cities based on the natural features” and the number of protected areas around a city center.

-Cultural assets: counting the number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the vicinity of the cities.

-Connectivity: calculating how many cities can be reached by plane from a city and the average number of flights from that city.

-Isolation: based on the number of large cities near a city.

-Pollution: using World Health Organisation (WHO)’s Air Pollution in Cities database to calculate air quality with a concentration of particulate matter of over 10 micrometres...

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Complete Streets Success Stories Focus of New Report

Complete Streets Success Stories Focus of New Report | green streets | Scoop.it
Representative Doris Matsui (CA-5), one of the Congressional sponsors of a federal Complete Streets policy, gathered with local leaders in Sacramento last week to celebrate the findings of the National Complete Streets Coalition’s new report, It’s a Safe Decision: Complete Streets in California (.pdf), and to call for a national Complete Streets policy to make streets safer for everyone.

“Since 2009, more than 880 pedestrians and bicyclists have been injured, 30 fatally, here in Sacramento,” said Congresswoman Matsui. “These needless and preventable incidents highlight the need for Complete Streets policies, which are critical to making our communities more livable, sustainable, and most importantly, safe.”

 

The report details the success of the Complete Streets approach across the Golden State. In addition to the policy guiding the California Department of Transportation has its own policy (adopted in 2001 and updated in 2008), fifteen communities in California have adopted Complete Streets policies. A state law passed in 2008 is spurring the creation and adoption of even more policies as cities and counties update their general plans...

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Livable Cities | Philips Meaningful Innovation

Livable Cities | Philips Meaningful Innovation | green streets | Scoop.it
A great city shouldn’t just be livable, it should be lovable too. International Urban Consultant Dr. Shipra Narang reports on a two-year assignment by a team of nine experts to explore and assess the key ingredients required to create a successful city that’s fit for the future.

Brought together by the Philips Center for Health & Wellbeing, the think-tank has worked with partners including the Center for Livable Cities in Singapore to identify what makes a city truly livable...

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Rethinking the Streetspace: What's Next?

Rethinking the Streetspace: What's Next? | green streets | Scoop.it

Two years ago, Georgia Sheridan and Amber Hawkes wrote a series of articles for Planetizen on how cities were "rethinking the streetspace." Revisiting the same cities today, they discovered significant advances in street planning, and some new challenges as well.

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What is new urbanism? - Helium

In the 1920s, the U.S. cities were organized in an ideal structure of walkable neighborhoods. The entire city was walkable... Christina Pomoni (What is new urbanism?)
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The Top 10 Most Livable Cities of 2012

The Top 10 Most Livable Cities of 2012 | green streets | Scoop.it
The Quality of Living Survey is conducted annually by Mercer to help multinational companies and organizations fairly compensate their employees when assigning them to international placements.
This year, the company evaluated the local living conditions of more than 460 cities worldwide, and the survey was based on 39 factors, divided into 10 categories: Political and social environment, economic environment, socio-cultural environment, medical and health considerations, schools and education, public services and transportation, recreation, consumer goods, housing, and natural environment.

According to the list, European cities still make up the top of the crop this year, seizing eight out of the top ten slots. Among them, Switzerland and Germany proved best-performing, with three cities in the top ten.
In the Asia-Pacific region, Auckland retains its position as the highest-ranking city when it comes to quality of living. China had three cities edged into the top 100 list, with Hong Kong performing best at the 70th place, Taipei ranked 85th, and Shanghai at the 95th spot...
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The world's leading cities for opportunity: a new report on adaptability, resilience & livability

The world's leading cities for opportunity: a new report on adaptability, resilience & livability | green streets | Scoop.it

A new report ranks the world's leading cities for economic, technological, and social opportunity. New York tops the list of the world’s best "cities of opportunity," with London second and Toronto third.

The report gauges 27 of the world’s largest and most influential global cities on their ability to provide opportunity to their residents — both long-term residents and new immigrants.

It seeks to determine the ability of cities not just to grow and develop, but to provide broad opportunities. It addresses the adaptability and resilience of cities and highlights the connection between quality of life, or livability, and long-term economic growth and development.

The 27 cities covered by the report are global powerhouses, accounting for nearly eight percent of global economic output, while housing just 2.5 percent of its population. The report projects that these 27 cities will add 19 million more residents, 13.7 million more jobs, and $3.3 trillion more in economic output by 2025...

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Where Are the World's Most Livable Cities?

Where Are the World's Most Livable Cities? | green streets | Scoop.it
The US has some beautiful places, but if you want to root yourself in the world’s most livable city, you’ll need to head Down Under because Melbourne, Australia has again been ranked at the top of the list.

The annual Livability Ranking and Overview assessed living conditions in 140 cities around the world, taking into account 30 factors in five categories: stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education, and infrastructure. Each city was then given a score of 0-100, and Melbourne — with a score of 97.5 — reigned supreme for the second year in a row, earning perfect scores for infrastructure, healthcare and education. The Australian cities of Adelaide, Sydney and Perth also made the top 10.In fact, of the 10 most livable cities, seven were in Australia and Canada. Our neighbors to the north who live in Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary inhabit cities that scored between 97.3 and 96.6 in the review.

But what about the US? Honolulu was the highest-ranked American city on the list, and it came at number 26. Counting the Hawaiian paradise, only nine US cities scored above 90 — the others were Pittsburgh, Washington, DC, Chicago, Atlanta, Miami, Detroit, Boston and Seattle...

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Designing Buildings that Evolve with the City

Designing Buildings that Evolve with the City | green streets | Scoop.it

Resilient cities need infrastructure that lasts and planning teams that are willing to step up to the plate. Designing structures that can sustain decades of use requires forethought beyond the basic combination of blocks, steel and glass. Just like sidewalks and street corners, city buildings have the power to connect people to one another. Buildings are shelters from unpredictable weather, places where people can have a good time or sit quietly and think. Buildings can also serve as checkpoints or another step in someone’s journey from point A to B.
Developing cities that thrive through the ebb and flow of time are not simply about creating infrastructure that can persist, but about designing buildings that evolve as cities evolve. Sustainable design transforms as cities develop visions for furthering connections among neighborhoods and city sectors. Design features such as energy efficiency, water conservation, and heat reduction that better regulates a building’s temperature are significant elements that replenish a city’s vitality through buildings that are capable of adapting to a city’s needs. Infrastructure that is greater than the sum of its parts also requires infrastructure that functions according to the changing needs of residents...

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New Report: Livability and Placemaking for All Communities ...

New Report: Livability and Placemaking for All Communities ... | green streets | Scoop.it
I had the unique opportunity to participate in a “Smart Growth” bus tour of communities in North Carolina, organized last year by the Walkable and Livable Communities Institute and the Local Government Commission. We visited a variety of neighborhoods, from low-density to high, pre-car to newly developed, to learn how livable and sustainable principles can help a wide range of communities to adapt to meet the challenges of the 21st Century.

Important lessons can be learned from each of the communities we visited. None were perfect, but as Joel Garreau pointed out in Edge City: Life on the New Frontier, now-revered places like Venice and London were pieced together over centuries; flaws were frequently pointed out by critics, and fixed over time. Flaws in these places will be addressed over time as well. What is critical about each location is that they are testing out new ideas of what a sustainable future could look like. The neighborhoods that had the best sense of place were those that were created over a hundred years, and they serve as great models for how to take Traditional Neighborhood Development, Form Based Codes and other contemporary planning strategies to the next level...

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Helen Davis Johnson on Placemaking | Economics of Place

Helen Davis Johnson on Placemaking | Economics of Place | green streets | Scoop.it
Interesting places attract interesting people.

Cities that develop an increasingly large talent pool will be successful 21st century cities. Great places boast a strong identity; offering good food, and stimulating entertainment. In a strong city, there is access to successful educational systems, real opportunities to earn a respectable wage, to make valued connections and to be safe. These amenities are not accidental; they are the result of good planning and creative placemaking.

Without relevant options such as these, cities today lose credibility with bright, talented people. In an increasingly knowledge-based economy, one in which cities are competing to develop and attract talented citizens, engagement in creative placemaking activities is no longer optional...

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Making Cities Better: The Scientific American Survey

Making Cities Better: The Scientific American Survey | green streets | Scoop.it

Scientific American asked opinion leaders from government, academia and the social network of our readers to answer a simple question:
What innovation (technological or otherwise) would make a city substantially more livable?

A selection of the most inspiring answers are printed in the September issue. Additional impressive replies, edited for brevity and clarity, also appear here.

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U-cities: Seeking the right combination | Sustainable Cities

U-cities: Seeking the right combination | Sustainable Cities | green streets | Scoop.it
Building smart and livable city will take more than technology: trials, readjustments and selection are inevitable.
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