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Conservation & Recreation

Wild in the City! Lions, Roaches and Boars: Cities are Full of Animals

June 10, 2015 by The Nature of Cities
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Who do you share your neighborhood with?

From red foxes in London and wild boars in Berlin to cockroaches in New York City and slugs in Miami, 'Feral Cities: Adventures with Animals in the Urban Jungle', by Tristan Donovan is full of stories of urban wildlife. Some of the animals are familiar ones, such as the fruit flies you can’t keep away from your bananas, while others, such as Monk Parakeets in the middle of Brooklyn, are surprises.[read more]

Living Plans and Resilient, Happy, Included Citizens

June 8, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Kids need greenspace

Urban green areas and public spaces are key elements in urban infrastructure, mitigating environmental challenges, fulfilling social functions, and contributing to the ecosystems of the region. In Bogota, the concept is a central element of urban planning but has not been easy to implement. Debate persists about the relative merits of development and conservation.[read more]

How Eight Principles of Civic Ecology Enable Disaster Recovery

June 5, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Day of Unity in Joplin

How eight principles of civic ecology were used in a Midwestern community to help it build recovery and resilience following a devastating EF-5 tornado with 200mph winds that took 161 lives and destroyed homes, businesses, churches, hospitals, landscapes, and at least 10,000 mature trees.[read more]

Mikyoung Kim and Using Fractals to Design Beautiful Places

June 4, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

140 West Plaza: Exhale

Four examples of the stunning work of Mikyoung Kim, FASLA. The Crown Sky Garden at the Hospital of Chicago; 140 West Plaza: Exhale; Farrar Pond Residence; and the Sunken Stone Garden at ChonGae Canal Source Point Park. Kim believes that landscape architects “can’t predict how a public space will be used and allow for flexibility”.[read more]

“Community in Nature”: Reconnecting Singapore’s Urbanites with Nature

May 31, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Greening the school

An exemplary project is transforming the relationship between citizens and nature in the city of Singapore by coordinating all nature-related events, activities, and programmes to better reach out to all communities, especially schools, to encourage them to bond over and with nature.[read more]

How a Genius Placemaking Experiment Rescued the Failing City of Zaragoza

May 29, 2015 by Project for Public Spaces

The city as a laboratory for citizen-led innovation.

The inspiring story of how a group of architects, citizens, community organizations, and city agencies turned round a city where unemployment was at an all-time high, property values had plummeted, and there was deep social unrest using citizen-led placemaking, in five years.[read more]

Biodiversity Loss Continues in the European Union. What Can Be Done?

May 29, 2015 by Ceri Margerison

EU27 biogeographic and marine regions are losing species

The results of the latest round of reporting under the European Birds and Habitats Directives, published last week as State of Nature in the EU, say that if current trends continue, we will fail to meet the target of “halting the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services in the EU by 2020”.[read more]

Using Iconic Species to Mobilize Support for Conserving Urban Wildlife Habitats

May 24, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

The Portland Heron and Portland's Mayor

Since Portland City Council declared the Great Blue Heron Portland’s official bird, every year a proclamation ends with city commitments to undertake habitat acquisition, restoration and management during the coming year to protect and improve heron habitat and, by extension, fish and wildlife habitat generally throughout the city.[read more]

The 6 Rules of Making Attractive City [VIDEO]

May 22, 2015 by Future Cape Town

Creating Urban Appeal

This short, brilliant video is a manifesto featuring Alain de Botton, the founder of London’s The School of Life, who explains how to make attractive cities with six fundamental rules. Botton explains that city planners should identify more scientifically the principles that determine how a city gets to become ugly or pretty.[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]

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]

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]