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  • March 12, 2017

    Bishkek: Building on Old Bones
    Jennifer Baljko, Barcelona

    I have an affection for cities in transition. I like when I visit a city for the first time and get an immediate sense that things are changing, that there is a blurring between what’s old and what’s new. Bishkek,...

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    February 19, 2017

    Southeast Asia’s Urban Future: A Snapshot of Kuala Lumpur
    Chris Ives, Nottingham
    Alex Lechner, Kuala Lumpur

    We found ourselves scrambling along the slippery, vine-entangled slope, ducking under branches and contorting ourselves around fallen trees. The air was hot and thick with humidity, causing us to sweat after just a few minutes on the trail. As we...

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    January 30, 2017

    Finding Nature in the Walls of a Power Station
    Patrick Lydon, San Jose & Seoul

    A review of Why Not Ask Again, the 11th Shanghai Biennale at the Power Station of Art in Shanghai, China, on view through 12 March 2017. It’s not unusual by any means in the contemporary art world, but as an...

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    January 25, 2017

    Beyond the City
    Naomi Tsur, Jerusalem

    This concept paper was inspired by a series of round table discussions that were hosted by the Israel Urban Forum, together with the Bezalel Academy of Urban Design in Jerusalem. The participants at my round table, where the topic of...

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    January 18, 2017

    Can a City Be Sustainable?
    Paul Downton, Melbourne

    A review of Can a City Be Sustainable? By Gary Gardner, Tom Prugh, and Michael Renner. 2016. Island Press.  Buy the book. This compact volume is an ambitious portmanteau of information on sustainable urbanism that covers an impressive range of issues and amply...

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    January 11, 2017

    Building for Birds: An Online Tool to Evaluate How Different Development Designs Impact Forest Bird Habitat
    Mark Hostetler, Gainesville
    Jan-Michael Archer, Gainesville

    Often, city forest fragments and tree canopies are overlooked by city planners and developers as important bird habitat. More often than not, people only regard large patches as beneficial. The message from conservationists is that we want to avoid fragmentation...

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    December 28, 2016

    Highlights from The Nature of Cities in 2016
    David Maddox, New York City

    Today’s post celebrates highlights from TNOC writing in 2016. These contributions, originating around the world, were widely read, offer novel points of view, are somehow disruptive in a useful way, or combine these characteristics. Certainly, all 550+ TNOC essays and roundtables are...

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    October 2, 2016

    Closing the Gap Between Girls’ Education and Women in the Workforce
    Jennifer Baljko, Barcelona

    Nilofar* leans over to pour us more tea. All conversations in Central Asia seem to start with tea. She is asking questions about our trip, wondering why we are walking from Bangkok to Barcelona. She wants to know if we...

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    September 25, 2016

    The Promise of the Big City: Migrants and Refugees Will Come to Your City. It’s Not a Novel Idea, but Cities Act Like it Is
    Jennifer Baljko, Barcelona

    “My husband is in Moscow.” “My son and his wife moved to Moscow a few years ago.” “My brother and sister work in Moscow.” “I want to go to Moscow. I can find a job there, and make more money...

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    September 21, 2016

    HERITAGE: Downtrodden and Torn Down
    Steve Brown, Sydney

    Sydney is in heritage crisis mode. Ancient Aboriginal campsites are being dug-up and destroyed. Low-income residents are being forcibly removed from their long occupied, heritage-listed, city-centre homes and apartments. Magnificent and much-loved trees are being uprooted from their parkland settings....

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    September 11, 2016

    How Did Seoul’s Cheonggyecheon River Restoration Get Its Start? TNOC Podcast Episode 10
    Philip Silva, New York
    David Maddox, New York City

    Story Notes: A casual chat on a bus nearly thirty years ago led to the improbable removal of a major elevated highway and the restoration of a beloved river in the old city center of Seoul in South Korea. Dr....

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    June 7, 2016

    How Edible is My City?
    Naomi Tsur, Jerusalem

    I find myself choosing the title for this contribution at a time of personal, public, and professional dilemma. Strangely, the dilemma stems from the need to vindicate the question itself. While it is perfectly acceptable to ask how green, how...

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    March 6, 2016

    Why Conserve Small Forest Fragments and Individual Trees in Urban Areas?
    Mark Hostetler, Gainesville

    For many developers and city planners, it takes time and money to plan around trees and small forest fragments. Often, the message from conservationists is that we want to avoid fragmentation and to conserve large forested areas. While this goal...

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    March 1, 2016

    Urban Nature that Reduces Risk in Kampala
    Shuaib Lwasa, Kampala

    I have written in previous articles (here and here) that Kampala’s urban landscape has been largely fragmented, just like the landscapes of many other cities. In fact, this is the common character of urban development. But it isn’t the only...

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    February 23, 2016

    Crosstown Walk Goes Global: Reflections From a Recent UrBioNet Workshop
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town

    I have just returned from an exhilarating week spent in a workshop with a collection of UrBioNet members. UrBioNet is a network of researchers, practitioners, and students with an interest in urban ecology and biodiversity. It is broad in its...

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    February 22, 2016

    Green Infrastructure is Possible, and Necessary, for Communities at Multiple Scales
    Ana Faggi, Buenos Aires

    A review of Strategic Green Infrastructure Planning: A Multi-Scale Approach, by Karen Firehock, with chapter seven by R Andrew Walker. 2015. ISBN 978-1-61091-692-9. Island Press, Washington. 138 pages. Buy the book. Almost everyone knows what urban greening looks like and how much...

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    February 2, 2016

    The Elephant in the Room: Amazonian Cities Deserve More Attention in Climate Change and Sustainability Discussions
    Eduardo Brondizio, Bloomington

    Justifiably, the Amazon region has been at the center of climate change discussions and negotiations since the late 1980s. It is not difficult to explain ‘justifiably’ when one is referring to a region of continental proportions, with unparalleled biological and...

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    February 1, 2016

    Ecodesign is for Citizens and Nature, not for Consumers
    Paul Downton, Melbourne

    A review of Ecodesign for Cities and Suburbs, by Jonathan Barnett and Larry Beasley. 2015. ISBN: 9781610913393. Island Press, Washington. 280 pages. Buy the book. This book has an unashamedly strong emphasis on the city of Vancouver as a model—a city...

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    January 24, 2016

    Values that Underlie the Landscape of Cities—Those that DO and those that SHOULD
    Gloria Aponte, Medellín

    Para leer la versión en español, haga clic aquí. Coexistence between nature and urban is not a matter of experts but a matter directly related to the “civic values.” —De las Rivas What is the shape and formal composition given by...

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    January 7, 2016

    Should Bangalore Aim to Become a Smart City?
    Sumetee Gajjar, Bangalore

    There is growing recognition that cities, which already house more than half the world’s population, require increased policy and development attention. India’s policy response to the need for sustainable, resilient and low-carbon cities is the Smart City mission. According to...

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