Happy City

Happy City
Author: Charles Montgomery
Publsiher: Doubleday Canada
Total Pages: 320
Release: 2013-11-12
Genre: Political Science
ISBN: 9780385669139

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Charles Montgomery’s Happy City will revolutionize the way we think about urban life. After decades of unchecked sprawl, more people than ever are moving back to the city. Dense urban living has been prescribed as a panacea for the environmental and resource crises of our time. But is it better or worse for our happiness? Are subways, sidewalks and condo towers an improvement on the car-dependence of sprawl? The award-winning journalist Charles Montgomery finds answers to such questions at the intersection between urban design and the emerging science of happiness, during an exhilarating journey through some of the world’s most dynamic cities. He meets the visionary mayor who introduced a “sexy” bus to ease status anxiety in Bogotá; the architect who brought the lessons of medieval Tuscan hill towns to modern-day New York City; the activist who turned Paris’s urban freeways into beaches; and an army of American suburbanites who have hacked the design of their own streets and neighborhoods. Rich with new insights from psychology, neuroscience and Montgomery’s own urban experiments, Happy City reveals how our cities can shape our thoughts as well as our behavior. The message is as surprising as it is hopeful: by retrofitting cities and our own lives for happiness, we can tackle the urgent challenges of our age. The happy city can save the world--and all of us can help build it.

Soft City

Soft City
Author: David Sim
Publsiher: Island Press
Total Pages: 256
Release: 2019-08-20
Genre: Architecture
ISBN: 9781642830187

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Imagine waking up to the gentle noises of the city, and moving through your day with complete confidence that you will get where you need to go quickly and efficiently. Soft City is about ease and comfort, where density has a human dimension, adapting to our ever-changing needs, nurturing relationships, and accommodating the pleasures of everyday life. How do we move from the current reality in most cites—separated uses and lengthy commutes in single-occupancy vehicles that drain human, environmental, and community resources—to support a soft city approach? In Soft City David Sim, partner and creative director at Gehl, shows how this is possible, presenting ideas and graphic examples from around the globe. He draws from his vast design experience to make a case for a dense and diverse built environment at a human scale, which he presents through a series of observations of older and newer places, and a range of simple built phenomena, some traditional and some totally new inventions. Sim shows that increasing density is not enough. The soft city must consider the organization and layout of the built environment for more fluid movement and comfort, a diversity of building types, and thoughtful design to ensure a sustainable urban environment and society. Soft City begins with the big ideas of happiness and quality of life, and then shows how they are tied to the way we live. The heart of the book is highly visual and shows the building blocks for neighborhoods: building types and their organization and orientation; how we can get along as we get around a city; and living with the weather. As every citizen deals with the reality of a changing climate, Soft City explores how the built environment can adapt and respond. Soft City offers inspiration, ideas, and guidance for anyone interested in city building. Sim shows how to make any city more efficient, more livable, and better connected to the environment.

The Death and Life of Great American Cities

The Death and Life of Great American Cities
Author: Jane Jacobs
Publsiher: Vintage
Total Pages: 480
Release: 2016-07-20
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 9780525432852

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Thirty years after its publication, The Death and Life of Great American Cities was described by The New York Times as "perhaps the most influential single work in the history of town planning....[It] can also be seen in a much larger context. It is first of all a work of literature; the descriptions of street life as a kind of ballet and the bitingly satiric account of traditional planning theory can still be read for pleasure even by those who long ago absorbed and appropriated the book's arguments." Jane Jacobs, an editor and writer on architecture in New York City in the early sixties, argued that urban diversity and vitality were being destroyed by powerful architects and city planners. Rigorous, sane, and delightfully epigrammatic, Jacobs's small masterpiece is a blueprint for the humanistic management of cities. It is sensible, knowledgeable, readable, indispensable. The author has written a new foreword for this Modern Library edition.

Walkable City

Walkable City
Author: Jeff Speck
Publsiher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Total Pages: 320
Release: 2012-11-13
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 9781429945967

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Jeff Speck has dedicated his career to determining what makes cities thrive. And he has boiled it down to one key factor: walkability. The very idea of a modern metropolis evokes visions of bustling sidewalks, vital mass transit, and a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly urban core. But in the typical American city, the car is still king, and downtown is a place that's easy to drive to but often not worth arriving at. Making walkability happen is relatively easy and cheap; seeing exactly what needs to be done is the trick. In this essential new book, Speck reveals the invisible workings of the city, how simple decisions have cascading effects, and how we can all make the right choices for our communities. Bursting with sharp observations and real-world examples, giving key insight into what urban planners actually do and how places can and do change, Walkable City lays out a practical, necessary, and eminently achievable vision of how to make our normal American cities great again.

Triumph of the City

Triumph of the City
Author: Edward Glaeser
Publsiher: Penguin
Total Pages: 352
Release: 2011-02-10
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 9781101475676

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Shortlisted for the Financial Times and McKinsey Best Book of the Year Award in 2011 “A masterpiece.” —Steven D. Levitt, coauthor of Freakonomics “Bursting with insights.” —The New York Times Book Review A pioneering urban economist presents a myth-shattering look at the majesty and greatness of cities America is an urban nation, yet cities get a bad rap: they're dirty, poor, unhealthy, environmentally unfriendly . . . or are they? In this revelatory book, Edward Glaeser, a leading urban economist, declares that cities are actually the healthiest, greenest, and richest (in both cultural and economic terms) places to live. He travels through history and around the globe to reveal the hidden workings of cities and how they bring out the best in humankind. Using intrepid reportage, keen analysis, and cogent argument, Glaeser makes an urgent, eloquent case for the city's importance and splendor, offering inspiring proof that the city is humanity's greatest creation and our best hope for the future.

Cities Are Good for You

Cities Are Good for You
Author: Leo Hollis
Publsiher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
Total Pages: 304
Release: 2013-07-16
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 9781620402078

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Cities are where the twenty-first century is really going to happen. Already at the beginning of the century, we became 50% urban as a global population, and by 2050 we're going to be up to 70% urban. So cities could either be our coffin or our ark. Leo Hollis presents evidence that cities can deliver a better life and a better world in the future. From exploring what slime mold can tell us about traffic flow, to looking at how traditional civic power structures are being overturned by Twitter, to investigating how cities all over the world are tackling climate change, population growth, poverty, shifting work patterns and the maintenance of the fragile trust of their citizens, Cities Are Good for You offers a new perspective on the city. Combining anecdote, scientific studies, historical portraits, first-hand interviews and observations of some of the most exciting world cities, Hollis upends long-held assumptions with new questions: Where do cities come from? Can we build a city from scratch? Does living in the city make you happier or fitter? Is the metropolis of the future female? What is the relationship between cities and creativity? And are slums really all that bad? Cities Are Good for You introduces us to dreamers, planners, revolutionaries, writers, scientists, architects, slum-dwellers and kings. Ranging globally and through time in search of answers--from the archive to the laboratory, from City Hall to the architect's desk--it is above all driven by the idea that cities are for people and by people.

A Country of Cities

A Country of Cities
Author: Vishaan Chakrabarti
Publsiher: Unknown
Total Pages: 251
Release: 2013
Genre: Political Science
ISBN: 1935202170

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In A Country of Cities, author Vishaan Chakrabarti argues that well-designed cities are the key to solving America's great national challenges: environmental degradation, unsustainable consumption, economic stagnation, rising public health costs and decreased social mobility. If we develop them wisely in the future, our cities can be the force leading us into a new era of progressive and prosperous stewardship of our nation. In compelling chapters, Chakrabarti brings us a wealth of information about cities, suburbs and exurbs, looking at how they developed across the 50 states and their roles in prosperity and globalization, sustainability and resilience, and heath and joy. Counter to what you might think, American cities today are growing faster than their suburban counterparts for the first time since the 1920s. If we can intelligently increase the density of our cities as they grow and build the transit systems, schools, parks and other infrastructure to support them, Chakrabarti shows us how both job opportunities and an improved, sustainable environment are truly within our means. In this call for an urban America, he illustrates his argument with numerous infographics illustrating provocative statistics on issues as disparate as rising childhood obesity rates, ever-lengthening automobile commutes and government subsidies that favor highways over mass transit. The book closes with an eloquent manifesto that rallies us to build "a Country of Cities," to turn a country of highways, houses and hedges into a country of trains, towers and trees. Vishaan Chakrabarti is an architect, scholar and founder of PAU. PAU designs architecture that builds the physical, cultural, and economic networks of cities, with an emphasis on beauty, function and user experience. PAU simultaneously advances strategic urbanism projects in the form of master planning, tactical project advice and advocacy.

Urban Sprawl and Public Health

Urban Sprawl and Public Health
Author: Howard Frumkin,Lawrence Frank,Lawrence D. Frank,Richard J. Jackson
Publsiher: Island Press
Total Pages: 338
Release: 2004-07-09
Genre: House & Home
ISBN: 1559633050

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'Urban Sprawl and Public Health' offers a survey of the impact that the built environment can have on the health of the people who inhabit our cities. The authors go on to suggest ways in which the design of cities could be improved & have a positive impact on the well-being of their citizens.

The Divided City

The Divided City
Author: Alan Mallach
Publsiher: Island Press
Total Pages: 343
Release: 2018-06-12
Genre: Architecture
ISBN: 9781610917810

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In The Divided City, urban practitioner and scholar Alan Mallach presents a detailed picture of what has happened over the past 15 to 20 years in industrial cities like Pittsburgh and Baltimore, as they have undergone unprecedented, unexpected revival. He spotlights these changes while placing them in their larger economic, social and political context. Most importantly, he explores the pervasive significance of race in American cities, and looks closely at the successes and failures of city governments, nonprofit entities, and citizens as they have tried to address the challenges of change. The Divided City concludes with strategies to foster greater equality and opportunity, firmly grounding them in the cities' economic and political realities.

Places of the Heart

Places of the Heart
Author: Colin Ellard
Publsiher: Bellevue Literary Press
Total Pages: 256
Release: 2015-08-17
Genre: Psychology
ISBN: 9781942658016

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Library of Science Book Club selection Discover magazine “What to Read” selection “A really great book.” —IRA FLATOW, Science Friday “One of the finest science writers I’ve ever read.” —Los Angeles Times “Ellard has a knack for distilling obscure scientific theories into practical wisdom.” —New York Times Book Review “[Ellard] mak[es] even the most mundane entomological experiment or exegesis of psychological geekspeak feel fresh and fascinating.” —NPR “Colin Ellard is one of the world’s foremost thinkers on the neuroscience of urban design. Here he offers an entirely new way to understand our cities—and ourselves.” —CHARLES MONTGOMERY, author of Happy City: Transforming Our Lives Through Urban Design Our surroundings can powerfully affect our thoughts, emotions, and physical responses, whether we’re awed by the Grand Canyon or Hagia Sophia, panicked in a crowded room, soothed by a walk in the park, or tempted in casinos and shopping malls. In Places of the Heart, Colin Ellard explores how our homes, workplaces, cities, and nature—places we escape to and can’t escape from—have influenced us throughout history, and how our brains and bodies respond to different types of real and virtual space. As he describes the insight he and other scientists have gained from new technologies, he assesses the influence these technologies will have on our evolving environment and asks what kind of world we are, and should be, creating. Colin Ellard is the author of You Are Here: Why We Can Find Our Way to the Moon, but Get Lost in the Mall. A cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Waterloo and director of its Urban Realities Laboratory, he lives in Kitchener, Ontario.

Green Metropolis

Green Metropolis
Author: David Owen
Publsiher: Penguin
Total Pages: 368
Release: 2009-09-17
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 9781101140314

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Look out for David Owen's next book, Where the Water Goes. A challenging, controversial, and highly readable look at our lives, our world, and our future. Most Americans think of crowded cities as ecological nightmares, as wastelands of concrete and garbage and diesel fumes and traffic jams. Yet residents of compact urban centers, Owen shows, individually consume less oil, electricity, and water than other Americans. They live in smaller spaces, discard less trash, and, most important of all, spend far less time in automobiles. Residents of Manhattan—the most densely populated place in North America—rank first in public-transit use and last in percapita greenhouse-gas production, and they consume gasoline at a rate that the country as a whole hasn’t matched since the mid-1920s, when the most widely owned car in the United States was the Ford Model T. They are also among the only people in the United States for whom walking is still an important means of daily transportation. These achievements are not accidents. Spreading people thinly across the countryside may make them feel green, but it doesn’t reduce the damage they do to the environment. In fact, it increases the damage, while also making the problems they cause harder to see and to address. Owen contends that the environmental problem we face, at the current stage of our assault on the world’s nonrenewable resources, is not how to make teeming cities more like the pristine countryside. The problem is how to make other settled places more like Manhattan, whose residents presently come closer than any other Americans to meeting environmental goals that all of us, eventually, will have to come to terms with.

Cities for People

Cities for People
Author: Jan Gehl
Publsiher: Island Press
Total Pages: 288
Release: 2013-03-05
Genre: Architecture
ISBN: 9781597269841

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For more than forty years Jan Gehl has helped to transform urban environments around the world based on his research into the ways people actually use—or could use—the spaces where they live and work. In this revolutionary book, Gehl presents his latest work creating (or recreating) cityscapes on a human scale. He clearly explains the methods and tools he uses to reconfigure unworkable cityscapes into the landscapes he believes they should be: cities for people. Taking into account changing demographics and changing lifestyles, Gehl emphasizes four human issues that he sees as essential to successful city planning. He explains how to develop cities that are Lively, Safe, Sustainable, and Healthy. Focusing on these issues leads Gehl to think of even the largest city on a very small scale. For Gehl, the urban landscape must be considered through the five human senses and experienced at the speed of walking rather than at the speed of riding in a car or bus or train. This small-scale view, he argues, is too frequently neglected in contemporary projects. In a final chapter, Gehl makes a plea for city planning on a human scale in the fast- growing cities of developing countries. A “Toolbox,” presenting key principles, overviews of methods, and keyword lists, concludes the book. The book is extensively illustrated with over 700 photos and drawings of examples from Gehl’s work around the globe.

Sustainable Urbanism

Sustainable Urbanism
Author: Douglas Farr
Publsiher: John Wiley & Sons
Total Pages: 304
Release: 2012-01-09
Genre: Architecture
ISBN: 9781118174517

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Written by the chair of the LEED-Neighborhood Development (LEED-ND) initiative, Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature is both an urgent call to action and a comprehensive introduction to "sustainable urbanism"--the emerging and growing design reform movement that combines the creation and enhancement of walkable and diverse places with the need to build high-performance infrastructure and buildings. Providing a historic perspective on the standards and regulations that got us to where we are today in terms of urban lifestyle and attempts at reform, Douglas Farr makes a powerful case for sustainable urbanism, showing where we went wrong, and where we need to go. He then explains how to implement sustainable urbanism through leadership and communication in cities, communities, and neighborhoods. Essays written by Farr and others delve into such issues as: Increasing sustainability through density. Integrating transportation and land use. Creating sustainable neighborhoods, including housing, car-free areas, locally-owned stores, walkable neighborhoods, and universal accessibility. The health and environmental benefits of linking humans to nature, including walk-to open spaces, neighborhood stormwater systems and waste treatment, and food production. High performance buildings and district energy systems. Enriching the argument are in-depth case studies in sustainable urbanism, from BedZED in London, England and Newington in Sydney, Australia, to New Railroad Square in Santa Rosa, California and Dongtan, Shanghai, China. An epilogue looks to the future of sustainable urbanism over the next 200 years. At once solidly researched and passionately argued, Sustainable Urbanism is the ideal guidebook for urban designers, planners, and architects who are eager to make a positive impact on our--and our descendants'--buildings, cities, and lives.

Human Transit

Human Transit
Author: Jarrett Walker
Publsiher: Island Press
Total Pages: 235
Release: 2012-07-29
Genre: Transportation
ISBN: 9781610911740

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Public transit is a powerful tool for addressing a huge range of urban problems, including traffic congestion and economic development as well as climate change. But while many people support transit in the abstract, it's often hard to channel that support into good transit investments. Part of the problem is that transit debates attract many kinds of experts, who often talk past each other. Ordinary people listen to a little of this and decide that transit is impossible to figure out. Jarrett Walker believes that transit can be simple, if we focus first on the underlying geometry that all transit technologies share. In Human Transit, Walker supplies the basic tools, the critical questions, and the means to make smarter decisions about designing and implementing transit services. Human Transit explains the fundamental geometry of transit that shapes successful systems; the process for fitting technology to a particular community; and the local choices that lead to transit-friendly development. Whether you are in the field or simply a concerned citizen, here is an accessible guide to achieving successful public transit that will enrich any community.

The Well Tempered City

The Well Tempered City
Author: Jonathan F. P. Rose
Publsiher: HarperCollins
Total Pages: 480
Release: 2016-09-13
Genre: Architecture
ISBN: 9780062234742

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2017 PROSE Award Winner: Outstanding Scholarly Work by a Trade Publisher In the vein of Jane Jacobs’s The Death and Life of Great American Cities and Edward Glaeser’s Triumph of the City, Jonathan F. P. Rose—a visionary in urban development and renewal—champions the role of cities in addressing the environmental, economic, and social challenges of the twenty-first century. Cities are birthplaces of civilization; centers of culture, trade, and progress; cauldrons of opportunity—and the home of eighty percent of the world’s population by 2050. As the 21st century progresses, metropolitan areas will bear the brunt of global megatrends such as climate change, natural resource depletion, population growth, income inequality, mass migrations, education and health disparities, among many others. In The Well-Tempered City, Jonathan F. P. Rose—the man who “repairs the fabric of cities”—distills a lifetime of interdisciplinary research and firsthand experience into a five-pronged model for how to design and reshape our cities with the goal of equalizing their landscape of opportunity. Drawing from the musical concept of “temperament” as a way to achieve harmony, Rose argues that well-tempered cities can be infused with systems that bend the arc of their development toward equality, resilience, adaptability, well-being, and the ever-unfolding harmony between civilization and nature. These goals may never be fully achieved, but our cities will be richer and happier if we aspire to them, and if we infuse our every plan and constructive step with this intention. A celebration of the city and an impassioned argument for its role in addressing the important issues in these volatile times, The Well-Tempered City is a reasoned, hopeful blueprint for a thriving metropolis—and the future.