Urbanization News Roundup March 18

After a week of catastrophic events in Japan and continuing unrest in the Libya it is very difficult to focus only on news related to cities.  However, there has been many interesting reports this past week that will interest urbanist.  We urge you though to look at this list of ways to help Japan.

Making Room for a Planet of Cities

This weeks featured story is a report by the Lincoln Land Institute, led by NYU Wagner adjunct professor Shlomo “Solly” Angel.  The report is “a comprehensive and original analysis of the quantitative dimensions of past, present, and future global urban land cover, culminating in a proposed new paradigm for preparing for explosive growth in cities the world over.”  Gregory K. Ingram, president and chief executive officer of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, wrote a feature article on the report for Planetizen:

Our most recent Policy Focus Report… suggests that key components of such planning in developing countries include generous metropolitan limits, an arterial grid of streets spaced one kilometer apart that can support transit, and selective protection of open space. The goals of densification, infill, and containment may be generally appropriate for U.S. cities, but not for cities in the developing world where average urban population densities are over four times higher than in the U.S.

Purchase the whole report here.

A group of architects have started an initiative, Vision 2050, to create three different models for the planning of Delhi. “….architects, mostly from the School of Planning and Architecture (SPA) in New Delhi, have started an initiative called Vision 2050 through which they intend to create three different models of Delhi. This project is a non-governmental effort and is carried out in collaboration with a company from the Netherlands, called Dutch Design Fashion Architecture, and the country’s embassy in India. What makes the initiative unique is that for the first time these models will be based on people’s aspirations and on what they think Delhi should be like in 2050. Most Indian cities are planned by a closed group of experts, and generally, the design is thrust upon the city without any consultations with its people.”

Maharashtra renews efforts on low-costs housing reservation “The Maharashtra government plans to make it mandatory for real estate developers to reserve more than one-third of the constructed area in new projects for low and middle-income families, in an effort to provide cheaper homes in cities such as Mumbai, where property prices are the highest in the country… The 35% reservation is the second such effort after a court rejected a previous order last month.”

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