In this video, Wendover Productions asks some simple (if rarely asked) questions about cities: Why do they exist? What causes them to grow exponentially over time in the way they do? In answering these questions, the video suggests that, somewhat paradoxically, the creation and growth of cities is a natural phenomenon, bringing up some interesting implications regarding city planning in the future.
Ranking cities is a risky endeavor. How can one be objective and fair when this great earth and its 7.6 billion inhabitants would never come to anything close to a consensus? And yet global consulting firm Resonance Consultancy has taken on the challenge based on the opinions of the people they claim matter most: "a city's visitors and its residents."
Surveying the inhabitants and tourists about 23 different factors (that are then grouped into six key categories—Place, Product, Programming, People, Prosperity and Promotion), the methodology aims to be comprehensive in the ranking of quality of place and reputation. In the people category, for example, the surveyors looked at things like the immigration rate and diversity of a city, including number of Foreign-born Residents. Also taken into consideration was the amount of "stories" or "mentions" a city generates on web platforms like Facebook, Google and even TripAdvisor. And, most relevant to us architects, cities were scored on their quality of neighborhoods, landmarks and parks.
https://www.archdaily.com/886150/the-worlds-best-cities-2018AD Editorial Team
Text from the organizers Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB). The Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), the only exhibition in the world to explore issues of urbanization and architectural development, will be opening for its 7th edition on December 15th, 2017. UABB will be held at Nantou Old Town in Nanshan district, an urban village that was once the administrative center of the Bao'An County. Hou Hanru, Liu Xiaodu, and Meng Yan (in alphabetic order) make up the curatorial team, all known for notable accomplishments in their respective fields. UABB is thrilled to host more than 200 award-winning exhibitors from 25 countries to share their perspectives on diversity and urban villages at this year’s biennale.
https://www.archdaily.com/884976/2017-bi-city-biennale-of-urbanism-architecture-opens-this-week-in-shenzhen韩爽 - HAN Shuang
Ideasforward wants to give young creative people from around the world the opportunity to express their views on the future of societies through their innovative and visionary proposals. We are an experimental platform seeking progressive ideas that reflect on emerging themes. The eco-design, sustainable architecture, new materials, concepts, and technologies are compelling issues in the societies of the future and the involvement of the whole community is imperative.
Cities are universes in themselves; furiously spawning, spewing, hissing through time and space. They are cudgeled, raked, plastered, worshipped, fought over, set on fire; they are slippery wombs that cradle wars, victories, blood and brilliant storms. The built environment has always been indicative of its inhabitants’ fears, desires, and ideals. As such, it is one of the earliest, most powerful forms of human expression. For World Cities Day 2017, the new BBC Designed section of the BBC Culture website commissioned motion graphics designer Al Boardman to create The Perfect City, an animated video covering a brief history of humankind’s quest for the "ideal" and the "perfect" in urban design. With a voiceover and script by renowned architecture critic and writer Jonathan Glancey, the video is a remarkable 2-minute overview of some prominent examples in city planning, both old and new, successful and unsuccessful.
https://www.archdaily.com/882688/playful-animation-tells-the-story-of-humankinds-quest-for-a-perfect-cityZoya Gul Hasan
In the past, cities were often constructed in the likeness the public--the built environment reflected citizens and local culture. It is questionable whether this can be said of the modern world. Much construction today is a product of capitalism, generating buildings and areas in which local people have no attachment or sense of agency over. Artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer believes this to be a fundamental crisis within our cities, and he is committed to reestablishing the relationship and representation of people within urban space. His work is examined in a new short film by PLANE-SITE, titled Public Interruptions.
A building today does not represent a citizen, a building today represents capital.
Jah Gehl is recognized as a follower of Jane Jacobs, the “grandmother” of urbanism and humanist planning. He has been a professor at the Danish Real Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen and visiting professor in Canada, the United States, New Zealand, Mexico, Australia, Belgium, Germany, Poland, and Norway. In 2000, he created his own consultancy along with Helle Søholt, Gehl Architects, in Denmark, where he completed diverse urban projects from around the world using data and strategic analysis.
The below text comes from an interview with the Danish architect, theorist and world leader in urban development, and promoter, following Jane Jacobs, of the human scale in the design of public spaces.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has announced ambitious plans to build a $500 billion technological megacity “the size of a country” that will be run entirely of renewable energy sources. Known as NEOM, the innovation hub will cover a 10,232-square-mile (26,500-square-kilometer) area in the northwest of the country along the Red Sea and Gulf of Aqaba. The city is planned to extend into neighboring Egypt and Jordan, making it the first private zone to span three countries.
In the age of green screen backgrounds, hyperrealistic renderings and the endless run of superhero movies that rely heavily on special effects, some directors are still betting on turning cities into protagonists of their music videos. In the nineties, Michael Jackson visited Brazil and filmed They Do Not Care About Us in one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in South America – but do you remember which city it was?
Here we compiled ten music videos where the cities, their neighborhoods and their inhabitants serve as the stage for actors, singers, and dancers to display their art around the world.
Can you recognize the cities where these music videos were filmed? Take the test below and find out.
Tristram Hunt—director of London's Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A)—has expressed concern about one of the city's most successful semi-pedestrianized zones: Exhibition Road in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. As reported by The Art Newspaper, Hunt has argued that the traffic arrangements are “confusing, dangerous and unsatisfactory”. His answer, following a traffic collision on October 7, 2017, which injured 11 people, is to fully pedestrianize the area.
https://www.archdaily.com/881299/are-part-pedestrianized-zones-in-dense-urban-environments-dangerousAD Editorial Team
As urban areas develop, each city forms a unique structural logic. With this structure usually conceived on an ad-hoc basis, political terms such as “metropolitan area” and “neighborhood” are not always useful when analyzing and comparing the performance of cities. In a quest for new analytical tools, Robin Renner has devised an anatomically-based classification system in his new book Urban Being: Anatomy & Identity of the City. Through a thoughtful investigation of existing urban areas from around the globe using satellite images and personal experiences, Urban Being offers an insight into how transportation networks and streetscapes can be best organized to promote a healthy metropolitan environment.
Renner’s analysis ranges from macro-regions that can even cross country borders to the defined spaces between arterial roads in cities, which he calls "urban cells." As the neighborhoods and units in which inhabitants reside, urban cells are important when examining the identity and efficiency of a city. They are defined by both their physical properties and the actions that take place inside of them. Below is a small sample of how Renner analyzes urban cells from the book.
The people of Manchester, UK, recently gained access to an entirely new way to access local news and engage with their city: OtherWorld, a pilot news experiment from startup studio Like No Other and Google’s Digital News Initiative. OtherWorld uses Bluetooth and cutting-edge beacon technology to deliver geo-located news directly to your smartphone for free, without installing an app. Referred to on the OtherWorld website as “living media,” as users walk around the city and pass by story locations, a silent notification will pop up on their phones, disappearing again as they walk out of range. Because the news you see on OtherWorld is directly related to the space you’re currently occupying, the system ensures that the news you’ll see is relevant to you. This unobtrusive method allows users to choose whether and how they will engage as well as adding an evanescent, elusive quality to the stories; you could walk right by and miss one if you aren’t paying attention.
In this way, OtherWorld illustrates the layers of our cities that are often invisible to us, bringing them into focus and allowing a deeper level of exploration into even a familiar city neighborhood. Focusing on stories that involve a real-world experience, users could become aware of an event nearby, a volunteer opportunity, a public meeting, or any number of other possibilities—thereby involving themselves in the public space and public realm in a way they would not have otherwise been able to.
Clay Cockrell, a psychotherapist from New York (where there are so many psychotherapists that they could have their own neighborhood) takes her sessions outdoors. These sessions specifically entail walking, in places like Central Park or Battery Park, or wherever else the client prefers to go, as the location of the consultation is totally flexible. Though her method and fees are relatively similar to any other psychotherapist, the one marked difference is the environment in which the doctor-patient interaction takes place. The typical sofa, leather chair, Persian rug and prop library are all replaced with the street´s pavement, gravel or the park where the patient chooses to go.
Walking is much more than covering a certain distance by foot. It is also one of the most basic tools to achieve what is commonly referred to as “clearing the mind.” Walking is a free resource, easily accessible and almost always available, and facilitates the return to a calmer world where the mind can make connections free of interferences with the body, and the body, in turn, can connect with the ground that it walks on and the environment it is surrounded by.
On Thursday 29 of June, Jan Gehl the Danish architect and urban planner, spoke at the Conference “Thinking urban: cities for people” organised by UN-Habitat and the Official Architects College of Madrid (COAM as it is abbreviated in Spanish) about the urban transformations that have occurred in Copenhagen as a result of the errors of the modernist movement and the challenges facing the cities in the 21st century.
In a prior discussion with José María Ezquiaga (dean of COAM), and José Manuel Calvo (councilor of the Sustainable Development Area at the Madrid city council) at the Conference, Gehl highlighted the urban paradigm at the time of his student years, which is referred to as the Brasilia syndrome.
Ah, Invisible Cities. For many of us, Italo Calvino’s 1972 novel reserves a dear place in our libraries, architectural or otherwise, for its vivid recollections of cities and their curiosities, courtesy of a certain Marco Polo as he narrates to Kublai Khan. And while the book doesn’t specifically fit the bill in terms of conventional architectural writing, it resists an overall categorisation at all, instead superseding the distillation of the cities it contains into distinct boundaries and purposes.
For though there is a certain kind of sensory appeal that is captured in the details of places, the real beauty of Invisible Cities lies in the masking of underlying notions of time, identity and language within these details – a feat that is skillfully accomplished by both Marco and Calvino. With this in mind, here are three of many such principles, as revealed by the layered narrative of Invisible Cities.
It is said that the world is increasingly developed when in fact it is, undeniably, more technological and globalized. However, it seems risky to talk about development when the advances do not appear everywhere or for all inhabitants.
In such an uneven picture, a select few of the global population enjoy these advances, while a huge number live below the poverty line.
Such contrasts often go unnoticed in the city's daily life, however, are set forth on a diptych relationship with the urban layout, being, at the same time the cause and consequence of deep marks in city design. In Brazil, for example, we have the slums and poor communities that contrast with the buildings and upper-middle-class homes architecture, designed and built with all the necessary resources.
Ideasforward wants to give young creative people from around the world the opportunity to express their views on the future of societies through their innovative and visionary proposals. We are an experimental platform seeking progressive ideas that reflect on emerging themes.