and ultimately people start to vote with their feet ….as walkable urban places are seen by many to provide a more satisfying future and shared public spaces become a key to economic vitality
provoking a great reversal1970 2005Average Individual Income, City of Toronto
with a corresponding gradation of auto dependence Walking Driving Cycling Transit
A pattern of living andworking emerges that isultimately not sustainablewith dramatic impacts oncongestion Source: MTO, GO Transit, Globe and Mail
AUTOPIA DEAD MALLSHigh Gas Prices Worsening the Housing Bust–But Not Where Malls are Dying in AmericaDowntown From the Wall Street JournalBy Marty Jerome By Kellvyn Brown , 05-22-09April 24, 2008 |Here’s a real-estate tip: Buy downtown. In many cities, priceshave already bottomed out and are holding steady–or nudgingup. The same can’t be said for the suburbs. In fact, commutetimes to downtown areas are turning out to be a directpredictor of how far home prices have fallen–and how far off arecovery still is. The longer the commute, the bigger the drop.High gas prices alone don’t explain why many people are and cracks appear in the automoving closer to work. But they’re giving many Americans a dependent paradigmpainful reminder that long commutes carry aggravations thatultimately didn’t justify saving money on a house: the weeksspent every year sitting in snarled traffic, the mortal peril ofcongested freeways, the maintenance and fast depreciation ofyour car, and so forth.
The Good (City) Life: Why New Yorks Life Expectancy Is the Highest inthe NationNona Wilils Arononowitz…. The latest data from the Bureau of Vital Statistics shows New York City…has thehighest life expectancy in the country. Babies born in 2009 can expect to live a record80.6 years. Thats almost three years longer than a decade ago, and more than twoyears longer than the current national average of 78.2 years.First, we dont spend our entire lives in cars. We walk everywhere. With narrowstreets, an abundance of stores, and a dearth of parking, the city is practicallydesigned to make us walk. Before we get on the subway, we walk there, and after wearrive at our stop, we climb numerous flights of stairs.Our old people also have it much better than the elderly in bucolic settings. Theessentials—food, medicine, laundromats, parks—are usually mere blocks from theirhomes. The hospital is likely a shorter distance away, too. High population densitymeans a plethora of neighbors who can look after each other. When people live ontop of each other, the likelihood of social isolation plummets—and the age of deathrises. Life expectancy isnt the whole story—just because someone is old doesntmean theyre able to live a pleasurable and fulfilling life. But cities like New Yorktend to provide that, too. Theres something to be said for mental stimulation, whichNew York City delivers in droves. Studies have shown that cultural attractions gettingpeople out of the house and exercising their brains elongate life. So do friends. So,apparently, do random people with crazy outfits walking down the street. The morevariety in ones daily life, the more life is, literally, worth living.Despite the caveats, this newest data makes it clear: Its high time for the myth ofthe “urban health penalty” to die out.
These challenges (and others) are immense but cities, the most remarkable of human creations and the great synthesizers, have an incredible capacity to learn, to recover, and to adaptMAKING THE PARADIGM SHIFT - unlearning bad habits, new tools, teams and ways of working Taking a method on the road to Saint Paul – the Saint Paul on the Mississippi Development Framework Making mixed-use, compact, dense, walkable places
Learning that ‘sustainability’ is not a category but a way of synthesizing and connecting ‘Symbiocity’ Finding the essential DNA to create new places
Recovering from errorsRegent Park public housing project rebuilt as an new mixed-use mixed income neighbourhood
Making room for diversity and initiative: tapping the ingenuity of new arrivals - allowing the city to evolveThe incubation of businesses for new immigrant communities now happens in the suburban strip mall
Dealing with the powerful imperatives of nature Integratng flood proofing with city building - an urban estuary where the Don River enters Toronto HarbourRecovering from the disastrous mudslideon the Venezuelan coast
Co-existence – the Intertwining of the urban and the natural
Seeing the big picture; forging connections to great natural features
Responding to the irresistible urge to get to the water’s edge
The big design and development project of the next 50 years: Retrofitting suburban infrastructure
Suburban Transformations Mississauga - A “Vibrant Downtown” is one of 8 themes in the city’s Strategic Plan for next millennium
Marrying land use, transit investment and urban form – Downtown 2021
Public and private convergence to make it mixed, compact and walkable Colonizing the parking lots in Mississauga from a Farmers Market to the creation of a new downtown nieighbourhood
A Regional Focus – Support from 3 interlocking Provincial Plans for the GTHA “Greater Toronto Area Greenbelt” “Places to Grow” “The Big Move”
Putting it all together - trailblazing in cities that are leading the way Boston/Cambridge, Vancouver, Stockholm, Paris
There is an overwhelming case for empowering citiesCities hold the key to a more sustainable future Need to make the paradigm shift there - we have no better options Success goes to those cities that make the transition We need to make the critical changes together in democratic settings We need to create a new political space that reflects how we actually live in cities
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