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Design & Architecture

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How Sustainable Cities Collective Members Are Building a Better Future

July 29, 2015 by David Thorpe

Towards the green city [This is Singapore]

This is my last post for the time being on Sustainable Cities Collective and I want to take the opportunity to explain how I have come to understand the great value that it has. What will life be like for urban citizens in the future? The answer may depend upon whether you or your descendants will be living in a city which has implemented many of the ideas already covered on this website.[read more]

Buildings: Our Biggest (and Most Underutilized) Asset for Improving How Cities Perform

A quiet moment in Wuxi, China

It’s time for leaders from both the public and private sectors to pay attention to buildings as a way of improving how their cities perform. High performance buildings (and their cousins: net zero, or near-net zero buildings) are a boost to health and productivity. Here's how to begin.[read more]

Could A City Really Be Redesigned To Build Happiness? An Interview With Charles Montgomery

July 27, 2015 by Walk21 Vienna

Planning for fun

Could a city really be redesigned to build happiness? One major aspect of liveability relates to how happy we can feel in the public spaces we inhabit. We talk to one of the leading authors in the field of urban happiness, Charles Montgomery, who will be a plenary speaker in the upcoming Walk21 conference in Vienna.[read more]

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Why Cities Need Youth Innovation for a Low Carbon Future

July 24, 2015 by Ivan Bruce

Young winners, designers of a walking app

More than ever, we need young people involved in creating sustainable cities. This can be achieved by establishing and strengthening networks that provide opportunities for young aspiring entrepreneurs and innovators to get involved and learn from like-minded groups of individuals on a global scale.[read more]

How to Choose the Right Plants and Take Care of A Green Roof

July 24, 2015 by Glenn Meyers

It's a roof. Take care of it.

The results of a five year study by the Chicago Botanic Garden list nine plants rated "excellent" and 67 rated "good" for use in a green roof environment. Meanwhile, Sasha Aguilera, Design Consultant for Xeroflor Canada, an industry leader in pre-vegetated roofing, has put together some suggestions for green roof maintenance and design.[read more]

Revealed: the Top 10 Countries for LEED Green Building Certification in 2015 [infographic]

...outside the USA.

There are LEED projects in more than 150 countries and territories, representing every continent except for Antarctica. LEED is being used in highly industrialized nations and newly developing ones, and is helping to demonstrate the enormous power and potential of the emerging green economy. Here are the top 10 countries outside the USA.[read more]

The Greenest Supermarket Needs More Than Efficiency

July 23, 2015 by Tyler Caine

Infographic inside!

What is the most sustainable supermarket that we can imagine, knowing that sustainability has to be thought of as more than just a technological fix to a wasteful lifestyle?[read more]

As Cities Evolve, 'Access' Means More Than Cars

July 22, 2015 by Chuck Wolfe

What does this picture tell us?

Questions and answers about accessing cities and neighborhoods now mean many things—depending on context—including transportation modes; sustainability and the shared economy; public safety and particular approaches to community participation; and aspects of social equity.[read more]

'One Planet' Home Wins Planning Battle

July 20, 2015 by David Thorpe

The 'hobbit house' can live!

A zero energy roundhouse, built by a young family, has been saved from demolition following an appeal to the local planning authority. Their campaign to save their house touched the hearts of thousands, who wrote in support, but this wasn't what saved the home.[read more]

Are Tunnels for Light Rail Really Cost Prohibitive?

July 20, 2015 by Klaus Philipsen

Worth the cost?

Many seem to buy the argument that tunnels are boondoggles. Being against transit tunnels is sold as prudent reasoning even where hardly any alternative exists, like the case of the rail tunnel under the Hudson River. So maybe a closer look at how such a tunnel is actually built is in order.[read more]

Post-Earthquakes, How Walking and Placemaking in Kathmandu is Changing

July 20, 2015 by Walk21 Vienna

Not exactly wheelchair friendly.

Insights into the walkability in Kathmandu, Nepal and the emergence of a new importance of public space since the earthquakes hit Nepal earlier this year. A report by Walk21 Vienna Ambassador Kristie Daniel.[read more]

Beyond Sim City: How Video Games Are Affecting City Planning

With increasingly advanced software and the rise of the “sand box” gaming genre (video games that enable players to freely design their environments) has come a flurry of city building simulators. They are having a major impact on real world urban design by inspiring dialogue and educating individuals on how to create sustainable cities.[read more]