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The cities and communities ....the present and the future - urban change.NET -
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Anatomy of a #SmartCity | #NatureCentric #Sensors

Anatomy of a #SmartCity | #NatureCentric #Sensors | The urban.NET |

The 19th century was a century of empires, 20th century was a century of nation states and the 21st century will be a century of cities...


This outstanding infographic (courtesy of begins with some information about our current state of urbanization.


Did you know that 1.3 million people are moving to cities each week?! It then explains the need for smart cities and delves into what is required to establish these intelligent connected environments, how the smart city may take various forms in the developing worlds and what specific technologies are necessary to achieve such grand goals in practice.

Via Lauren Moss, association concert urbain, Lockall
luiy's insight:

We have been grateful to the wide array of planners, architects, techies, entrepreneurs and students of the built environment who have joined us on this journey. And the ‘Smart City‘ has featured again and again, whether it be a futurologist’s insights into the bionic, nature-centric adaptable cities of the future, or an economist’s keen ideas on instilling happiness in the built environment.

Eli Levine's curator insight, December 18, 2014 10:45 AM

There is an evolution taking place where politics, policy, technology, the environment, and the economy all intersect. This movement towards technical, empirically driven local policy making could be our saving grace.This could be the future of government.

Paul Aneja - eTrends's curator insight, December 22, 2014 6:51 PM

What do you think makes a smarter city?

Serge G Laurens's curator insight, October 28, 2016 3:25 PM
Anatomy of a Smart City
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#Crowdsourced City: 14 #Citizen - Directed #Urban Projects

#Crowdsourced City: 14 #Citizen - Directed #Urban Projects | The urban.NET |
When urban planners and developers want to know what businesses local residents would like in their neighborhoods, where to put new bike lanes, or specific ...
luiy's insight:

SpaceHive is a website that crowdfunds civic projects in England, with proposals ranging from neighborhood festivals to new performance spaces in disused urban areas. It’s similar to Kickstarter, but focusing exclusively on community improvement. One recent project, the Porty Light Box, renovates decommissioned red phone booths into light boxes that display local artwork and images.

Mlik Sahib's curator insight, March 7, 2014 12:45 AM

“How can we make our city a better place to live?”

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Limited Urban Growth: London's Street Network Dynamics since the 18th Century I #smarcities #dataviz

Limited Urban Growth: London's Street Network Dynamics since the 18th Century I #smarcities #dataviz | The urban.NET |
PLOS ONE: an inclusive, peer-reviewed, open-access resource from the PUBLIC LIBRARY OF SCIENCE. Reports of well-performed scientific studies from all disciplines freely available to the whole world.
luiy's insight:
The problem of city boundariesWhen analysing urban structure, we consider the city as being composed of many layers of infrastructure which underpin its social and economic functioning [22]. These are interconnected and coevolve, and lead to many different definitions of the city's physical extent. Thus the definition of a city can be quite blurred with respect to these layers. Cities are usually analysed within their administrative boundaries, or within the extent of their urbanised area defined in terms of their population densities [23], [24]. Nevertheless, a precise definition of a city's physical extent is crucial to any statistical analysis and extremely relevant when measuring fundamental relations, as for example in Gibrat's law and Zipf's Law [9], [23], [25]. Here we deal with a city, London, which has been capacitated by an artificial boundary imposed to limit its growth and as such, it is representative of a number of world cities such as Paris, São Paulo, Hong Kong, and Seoul, that are similarly constrained.City growth as a street network can be understood as the coevolution of two distinct phenomena, based on the hierarchy of its roads. On the one hand, we have the growth of major roads (including motorways, class A and class B roads) and, on the other, the growth of minor roads. A and B roads represent the backbone of the city, concentrating the main flows of people and materials sustaining the city. Minor roads divide the blocks created by the A and B roads into smaller areas, and are mainly devoted to local residential and business use [26].

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#SmartCities: innovation in energy will drive #sustainable cities

#SmartCities: innovation in energy will drive #sustainable cities | The urban.NET |

'Cities represent three quarters of energy consumption and 80% of CO2 emissions worldwide, and represent the largest of any environmental policy challenge. Urbanisation is only set to increase, cities house half the world's population today but are set to host three quarters in 2050.

To cope with this continued urban growth we will need to invent new ways to manage cities and make them more effective. The convergence between digital technology and the world of energy, or Energy 3.0, will pave the way for a new ecosystem of services which will enable both a better quality of life and reduced energy consumption.'

Via Stephane Bilodeau, Lauren Moss, ParadigmGallery
luiy's insight:
Empowering people in smart cities

In the same way that the IT revolution has been driven by consumer needs, so too will the energy revolution. As blogs, social networks and video platforms have enabled people to produce information and customise their content, new technologies will make possible energy self-production and customisation of energy usages and consumption.


Smart cities will also enable the use of open data which will create new urban services such as better transport connections, accident risk warnings and home monitoring for part-time and full-time carers. Local councils will have greater responsibility for ensuring the collection and the public availability of this data.


Furthermore, by leveraging this data, businesses will be able to offer personalised services for users, for example smart meter data could permit utilities to offer new tariffs, such as time-of use pricing which will encourage end-users to use energy in off-peak times when it is cheaper.

Monica S Mcfeeters's curator insight, November 15, 2013 9:37 AM

I think local focus and efforts will indeed be where sustainability will come from in the long run.

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Watch Iconic Skylines Emerge Before Your Eyes | #dataviz #urban

Watch Iconic Skylines Emerge Before Your Eyes | #dataviz #urban | The urban.NET |

Corporate real estate data offers unexpectedly riveting views into the past.


Calgary-based real estate company Cube Cities has put together a series of 3-D animations that offer a mesmerizing look at the development of the modern cityscapes of New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Calgary, and Toronto. The videos overlay developer-reported data on construction dates on 3-D mapping technology from Google Earth.

Cube Cities is a new company focused on combining commercial real estate listings with Google Earth visualizations, in an effort to provide customers with a better idea of how prospective office space fits into a city's landscape. After signing up, you can zoom around and get a sense of, say, the views overlooking the Chicago River from the 40th floor of a specific skyscraper.

Developers used the video project to play around with representation models, so each of the videos use slightly different methods to indicate new buildings. In a particularly cool effect, the San Francisco animation begins with clear outlines of the current skyline, and viewers watch as the phantom city turns solid as time moves forward.

Via Lauren Moss
Francois Brosseau's curator insight, August 13, 2014 4:42 PM

Demand for office space by corporate tenants and businesses have fueled the growth of cities and their changing skylines.  We can indeed give credit to visionary developers taking on the development risk, but at the very root of development is demand which arises from the success of corporate and business tenants.

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Data Farming: Demonstrating the Benefits of Urban Agriculture [INFOGRAPHIC]

Data Farming: Demonstrating the Benefits of Urban Agriculture [INFOGRAPHIC] | The urban.NET |

Design Trust put together a metrics framework that measured the associated activities of urban agriculture with the known benefits derived from various studies to convince city officials of urban farming's positive impact.

Transforming underutilized land into productive urban farms was one of the many topics which were presented at the recent Kansas City Design Week.  Jerome Chou, past Director of Programs at the Design Trust for Public Space, presented his unique experience with the implementation of the Five Boroughs Farm in New York City and the impact that urban agriculture can have on low-income areas of a city.

Chou pointed out that having the land available for an urban farm is only half of the battle. The other half involves changing local zoning laws, influencing political opinion, garnering economic support, and proving the project will have a net benefit to a community...

Via Lauren Moss
Marcus Taylor's curator insight, August 4, 2013 3:40 AM

Urban Agriculture faces a myriad of challenges to enter the mainstream of urban development in the pursuit of "SmartCities" Worth a browse.

Daniel Moura's curator insight, January 23, 2015 4:22 AM
Many cities (like NYC) are leaving old prejudices behind and are converting green areas and unused land to urban agriculture. Improving food security and resilience, reduce city's ecological footprint, supporting pollinators, increasing biodiversity and building sense of community are just a few examples of the benefits it provides
Eric Larson's curator insight, February 13, 2017 12:49 PM
Benefits of urban agriculture?
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The Rhythm of #City. By @varvara_g | #socialdata #art

luiy's insight:

The Rhythm of City is an art piece that points out an innovative and artistic way for applying geo-located social data as a score. At the same time, the data represents a city's pace of life. The goal is to metaphorically describe locations by extracting geo-tagged content of Twitter, Flickr, Youtube, and translating it into the rhythm of a physical metronome in real time. In short, a metronome represents a city. The audience is given a chance to discover and experience an alternative way of perceiving different locations and have a bird's view on urban digital landscapes. Our concerns are about the malleability of the digital world to the physical one, and the interpretation of social data for artistic purposes.

The installation is a sonic and at the same time visual interface for perceiving the urban life and culture of different locations. Moreover, it gives an alternative meaning and purpose to the location-specific invisible online data.


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Mapping the 'Time Boundaries' of a City I #urban #dataviz

Mapping the 'Time Boundaries' of a City I #urban #dataviz | The urban.NET |
An EU-funded project is building platforms to detect patterns in how people use urban spaces.


Maps don't typically convey time very well. They're static snapshots of a moment in history. A handful of animated maps that do a good job combining time and space using either transit data or geo-tagged social-media hits.

Now a new project, called Geographies of Time, is trying to do something similar with a more typical two-dimensional map. The effort is part of a broader EU-funded projects called UrbanSensing that's building platforms to detect patterns in how people use urban spaces.

Via Lauren Moss
luiy's insight:

Giorgia Lupi, the Ph.D. researcher at Milan Politecnico behind the project, began with Milan. Using tens of thousands of geo-tagged tweets, she and colleagues divided the map of the city into a fine-grained grid. The tweets were then divided into eight three-hour time intervals (from midnight to 3 a.m., 3 a.m. to 6 a.m., etc.). And the boxes in the grid were digitally colored based on the time window when Twitter was locally most active.

nuria font-casaseca's curator insight, April 24, 2014 9:21 AM

Les ciutats i els temps: com ens movem per la ciutat en funció de l'hora i el dia.

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#SmartCities of the future I #urban #bigdata

luiy's insight:

The concept of the smart city emerged during the last decade as a fusion of ideas about how information and communications technologies might improve the functioning of cities, enhancing their efficiency, improving their competitiveness, and providing new ways in which problems of poverty, social deprivation, and poor envi- ronment might be addressed [26]. The essence of the idea revolves around the need to coordinate and integrate technologies that have hitherto been developed separately from one another but have clear synergies in their operation and need to be coupled so that many new opportunities which will improve the quality of life can be realized. The term smart city in fact has many faces [40]. Intelligent cities, virtual cities, digital cities, information cities are all perspectives on the idea that ICT is central to the operation of the future city [1]. Our research will embrace this challenge in the belief that coupling, coordination and integration are required so that future and emerging technologies can best be exploited in the interests of the community at large. An essential strand in our approach is to use ICT to engage the community through diverse instruments and initiatives that build upon online engagement in solving the key problems of cities, using the kinds of computer-based tools, techniques, methods and organisational structures that we will research here. To focus our research, we define seven goals. 

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Urban Characters: Exploring the places and objects that make each city unique | #urbanism

Urban Characters: Exploring the places and objects that make each city unique | #urbanism | The urban.NET |
A salute to those special places—some humble, some utterly utilitarian—that give a city its unique personality and collective soul.


The six places and objects shown at the link are urban amenities of a particular kind, but really they’re much more than that. These are the distinct features in the landscape that give a city its unique character. Every city has them. They can be supremely useful (the parkettes in Toronto, Pike Place Market in Seattle, Washington, D.C.’s fabulous subway stations) or gloriously idiosyncratic (the hidden staircases in Los Angeles, Pittsburgh’s charming Inclines, the incongruous gas lamps of sunny San Diego).

All of them, however, play a beloved civic role that transcends their mere function, lending a kind of quiet poetry to daily life, grace notes to the grind. Six writers and designers, one from each city, reflect on these special characters in the urban landscape...

Via Lauren Moss, ParadigmGallery
ParadigmGallery's curator insight, September 26, 2013 2:54 PM

This thought from the article sums it up for me...."believe that we can be great and that change is possible and that we can achieve it."

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Urban #Observatory Compare Cities | #smartcities #opendata

Urban #Observatory Compare Cities | #smartcities #opendata | The urban.NET |

Via bart rosseau
bart rosseau's curator insight, July 15, 2013 4:14 AM

great concept, great layout and design. Curious to see if this will last!

luiy's comment, March 1, 2014 11:36 AM
I can see the interesting application in the are of #eDemocracy
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Sky-high horticulture: Shenzhen's 'farmscraper' plan

Sky-high horticulture:  Shenzhen's 'farmscraper' plan | The urban.NET |

Conceived in response to a densely populated Chinese city's unchecked growth, Asian Cairns is an ambitious take on vertical farming.


A Belgian architect recently unveiled the 79-acre masterplan for Asian Cairns, a dizzying new vision of urban vertical farming in China. Consisting of a sextet of “sustainable monoliths for rural urbanity” — stacked, pebble-esque, steel-ringed transparent pods that are powered by both vertical wind turbines and photovoltaics — Vincent Callebaut Architects’ Asian Cairns is planned for the rapidly swelling, skyscraper-heavy port city of Shenzhen in the southern province of Guangdong north of Hong Kong.Beyond agricultural concerns, Asian Cairns is envisioned as a mixed-use development that also incorporates residential, retail, and recreational areas. Imagined as being completely emissions-free and producing more energy than they consume, the Cairns were conceived in direct response to Shenzhen’s unchecked urban development and the population growth and increased pollution levels that have accompanied it...

Via Lauren Moss
Duane Craig's curator insight, March 15, 2013 12:00 PM

Really cool, but I bet it will be a real challenge and expense to build it. Look at all the curved glass.

ParadigmGallery's curator insight, March 19, 2013 1:08 PM

TY Lauren Moss...