Webinar: Urban Acupuncture- Celebrating the Work and Vision of Jaime Lerner

In this webinar, panelists Stephen Goldsmith (Center for the Living City), Mike Lydon (Street Plans Collaborative), and Erin Barnes (ioby) discuss Jaime Lerner’s influence on community-based urban interventions. Moderated by The Overhead Wire’s Jeff Wood.   SUMMER READ: GET URBAN ACUPUNCTURE Katharine Sucher / June 28, 2016 / Island Press As Island Press kicks off its Free…

Interactive Activity: Notes + takeaways from the Arrival Cities live event

This week, the City Builder Book Club held its first live event to kick of the Arrival City edition of the club: Arrival Cities: Global Framework + Local Discourse, with Arrival City author Doug Saunders and activist, researcher, and HIGHRISE film collaborator Emily Paradis. Below, Centre for City Ecology volunteer Anna Wynveen recaps the evening,…

Week 12 wrap-up – We’re all done

We made it! Thank you to all of our Guides, the Toronto Public Library, our Twitter followers and Facebook fans, mailing list members, commenters, and to those of you who wrote and sketched your way through the book on your own sites! We have really enjoyed seeing this book through your eyes and learning from…

Ken Greenberg on cities as ecologies

(This post is adapted from my book, Walking Home: The Life and Lessons of a City Builder.) Jane Jacobs was one of the first to identify clear parallels between the complex workings of cities and the ecology of natural systems. She developed an appreciation for complex, “self-organizing” survival mechanisms and was frustrated with the kind of institutional wrong-headedness—bureaucratic, political and…

Mary Rowe on cities, nature, and chaotic systems

I think this is the most beloved chapter for any of us who were ever considered a ‘problem child’. I am afraid I can just imagine some well meaning teacher approaching my parents,  “Well, this is the kind of child your daughter is ….” I don’t think Jane Jacobs saw cities as a problem at…

Steven Dale on ‘The kind of problem a city is’

So here we are at the end. Or should I say “the beginning?” When reading Chapter 22 I couldn’t help but reflect on how much more potent this chapter would be had it been the very first chapter of the book. Before embarking on a really massive and oftentimes confusing book, wouldn’t it have been…

Gillian Mason on ‘Governing and planning districts’

In 1961, Jane Jacobs said: “if only [decisions-makers] knew… what the citizens of that place consider of value in their lives and why”. Further, she affirms that “Much of what [decisions-makers] need to know they can learn from no one but the people of the place, because nobody else knows enough about it.” What Jacobs…

Week 11 wrap-up – We’re almost finished

Can you believe next week is the last week of Death & Life? It seems like not so long ago we were talking about short blocks and eyes on the street, and now we’re gearing up for the last hurrah: how municipal governments work (or don’t), and the ultimate question — what kind of a problem…

Rosanne Haggerty on ‘Salvaging projects’ in Brownsville, Brooklyn

Contending with the failure of much post-war public housing has been one of the nation’s significant housing policy challenges. As more and more developments became unlivable as the result of poor design, inadequate maintenance, racial segregation, and the compounded effects of rising urban poverty — a process documented in the recent film, The Pruitt-Igoe Myth…

Nathan Storring on ‘Visual order: its limitations and possibilities’ in Toronto and West Hollywood

It’s not for naught that the word “authoritarian” starts with “author.” In societies where grand artistic ambitions are successfully imposed onto the life of cities, restrictions often extend far beyond the aesthetic realm—to an extent unacceptable in contemporary North America. In this chapter, Jacobs contests this overbearing aesthetic control, advocating for a more open-ended approach…