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Arts & Culture

How to Make Smart Growth More Lovable and Sustainable

June 30, 2015 by Kaid Benfield

Walkable... and enjoyable

It does little good to create a place that is sustainable if it is not in fact sustained, if it is not cared about, if it is not nourished and defended over time. That's why we should make places loveable. But unfortunately, lovability is exactly what I find missing in much of what passes for smart growth today.[read more]

Can a Building That Communicates Apartheid's Violence Help to Heal Its Wounds?

June 29, 2015 by Future Cape Town

The proposed building

A proposed project for the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (CSVR) in Cape Town seeks, according to Jaun van Wyk, its young South African architect, “advocate the awareness of such ferocious and inhumane realities in an effort to encourage violence prevention and ultimately embrace reconciliation”.[read more]

How Our New Buying Habits are Changing Design Approaches to Public Markets

June 26, 2015 by Project for Public Spaces

Markthal Rotterdam

Today’s markets are more and more becoming community hubs where visitors can gather, shop, eat, socialize, and learn. Many of these new hybrid spaces are “changing the way we define a market". So operational strategies continue to evolve in order to meet the changing needs of today’s customers.[read more]

Photo Essay: Why City Street Level Design Matters

June 26, 2015 by Future Cape Town

People watching in Cape Town

Urban design can promote active and vibrant street life but it can also threaten it. A photo essay by street photographer David van der Want, who observes the streets of Cape Town and communicates something about the places and spaces people use[read more]

Game On! 7 Fun Examples of Playful Placemaking

June 23, 2015 by Cape Town Partnership

Park – and slide?

Alan Cameron shares some of his favourite urban interventions that bring out the youth in him.[read more]

How Great Communities Grow at the Intersection of Health and Design

June 18, 2015 by Project for Public Spaces

Cities should be designed to promote health

“Is your zip code more important than your genetic code [for determining health]?” asks Dr. Anthony Iton, Vice President for Healthy Communities of the California Endowment. In addition to the lack of wholesome food and opportunities for exercise, people in low-income areas “live in a fog of stress”, he says.[read more]

The Future of Woodstock: How Socially Inclusive Change by Design Works

June 16, 2015 by Future Cape Town

Listen to the people

Claire du Trevou reports from the ‘Change by design’ workshop hosted by Architects Sans Frontiers UK and Development Action Group (DAG), which put the regeneration of Woodstock under the microscope. Through extensive mapping of land use, coupled with spatial narratives, a development framework for the town could evolve.[read more]


Rise of the Commonauts: A New Social Tool Tackling City-Dwellers' Taboo on Talking to Strangers

June 15, 2015 by Thomas Groetschnig

Wear a sticker and make a friend

COMMONAUTS is an urban intervention initiative and a social tool, designed to encourage face to face conversations between strangers in public spaces and other social environments of common interest such as open air festivals, cafés, plazas, bars, art exhibitions or popup markets.[read more]

From China to America: Art Makes City Streets Feel Loved Everywhere

Art makes cities feel loved

Street art can do a lot for a city: improve traffic safety, engage local political and social issues and contribute to the vibrancy of urban communities. In many urban neighborhoods worldwide, street art is no long seen as a public nuisance. Many cities have official programs to support it.[read more]

How Can We Engage Residents to Conserve Urban Biodiversity?

June 15, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Best practice in interpretation

Green developments need informed and engaged residents in order to retain the biodiversity value of a site. This essay reveals how signs installed in neighborhoods can be a technique to inform residents about conservation issues and engage residents to adopt new practices.[read more]

10 Things Alan Turing Teaches Us About Problem Solving

June 13, 2015 by Klaus Philipsen

Alan Turing can teach us a thing or two.

After watching the movie "the Imitation Game" in which its protagonist Alan Turing makes remarkable progress in problem solving, it seemed that the film offers inadvertently a set of instructive lessons about how to solve problems and how to design better.[read more]

Are Cities Becoming Less Authentic?

June 12, 2015 by Klaus Philipsen

Out with the old – at what cost?

In the never ending quest to find out what millennials want (bike sharing, walkability, brewpubs, strong coffee, placemaking) another attribute is frequently mentioned: authenticity, both as a desired quality millennials seek, or as a threatened quality that their influx destroys. So what makes places or cities authentic?[read more]