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Land Use

Blue Urbanism: The Next Frontier For Linking People In Cities to Nature

May 22, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Blue Urbanism book review

Cities should be designed in a way to enable citizens to have daily contact with the natural world. Since we're 70% water this book suggests ways to bring the 'blue belt' closer to us through amazing examples and practical suggestions from all over the world.[read more]

6 River Cities Offering Lessons in Resilience and How to Adapt to Climate Change

May 22, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Los Angeles River Revitalization 

In the era of climate change, cities with rivers can find creative responses to a changing environment. Each river city has a dynamic relationship with its river, so communities that depend on them must always strive to improve their adaptability and resilience. Here are several examples.[read more]

Three Ways Public Spaces Can Make Cities More Vibrant

Urban life is currently undergoing a transformation in cities worldwide. Through changing land use policies, high speed rail, and new technologies that foster online interaction, urban streets and public spaces are regaining their vitality. Here are three key reasons why we need to recognize the value of public spaces in creating cities for people.[read more]

In Uncertain Times, Urban Design Should Make Public Places More Flexible

May 22, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

The BIG U / Rebuild by Design

In uncertain times, urban design should make public places more flexible, more reassuring, more public. Cities are places where unlike-minded people share limited space. Their innovations—parks, skyscrapers, farmers’ markets–result from experiments to squeeze maximum benefit from a crowded place.[read more]

How China Can Leverage High-Speed Rail for Compact Urban Development

Wanted: transit-oriented development

China’s HSR system presents an opportunity for transit-oriented development (TOD) around new stations. However, this has often failed to occur in a controlled or compact manner. A more coordinated strategy for TOD around HSR stations could help Chinese cities develop in more compact and sustainable ways.[read more]

How Economically Viable Small Farms Can Benefit Local Urban Communities

Rishi Kumar, ecological designer & urban farmer.

Across Southern California, a new breed of small farmer is emerging to not only take advantage of the growing demand for local food, but also to connect urban communities to their food. These farmers are often working on backyard plots within or on the outskirts of cities that are less than 1-acre in size.[read more]

Everything You Wanted to Know About Tactical Urbanism

May 21, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Tactical Urbanism book cover

Tactical Urbanism: Short-term Action for Long-term Change, a new book by urban planners Mike Lydon and Anthony Garcia is the first book to really organize all the small fixes that seem to have spontaneously sprung up in so many communities in a way that everyone can understand: a lack of safe sidewalks or crosswalks; the absence of clear signage; the dearth of neighborhood parks and plazas, and the lack of community connection and solidarity.[read more]

How Would You Know If Your City or Community Was Resilient?

May 20, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Hurricane Sandy was a game changer.

How do you measure resilience in cities? How would you know if your city or your community was resilient? A selection of answers from ecologists and other specialists and experts from around the world.[read more]

80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World – Book Review

May 20, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Designed for the Future by Jared Green

In Designed for the Future: 80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World, Jared Green offers 80 thought-provoking and frequently inspiring answers to this question from landscape architects, urban planners, architects, journalists, artists, and environmental leaders in the U.S. and beyond[read more]

Young Urbanists, Architects, and the Future of Informal Settlements

May 20, 2015 by Future Cape Town

Alfredo Brillembourg of Urban-Think Tank (U-TT) and Luyanda Mpahlwa of DesignSpaceAfrica

Future Cape Town and its Young Urbanists members hosted two renowned architects, Alfredo Brillembourg of Urban-Think Tank (U-TT) and Luyanda Mpahlwa of DesignSpaceAfrica, last week. They spoke about housing and educating the future in developing cities.[read more]

What Cities Can Learn From Porto Alegre about Inclusive Planning

Redevelopment of Porto Alegre, Brazil’s port, has been contentious, as planning has lacked public participation and respect for local culture. Photo by marcusrg/Flickr.The sunset in front of Guaiba River, Usina do Gasômetro, and Mauá Port are iconic symbols of Rio Grande do Sul’s capital, Porto Alegre (“Porto” means port in English)....[read more]

Check How Your Area Ranks on a Livability Index of US Cities

May 19, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Check how your area ranks

AARP (formerly the American Association of Retired Persons) is backing liveable, walkable, affordable communities for seniors. Its new liveability index of US cities provides an easy-to-use tool that enables anyone to plug in an address or zip code to determine how liveable their community is.[read more]