Urbanization News April 22

This weeks top story: Moody’s downgrades China’s property sector from ‘stable’ to ‘negative.’  “The move comes as China tightens up lending and raises interest rates in a bid to tame inflation, which is sitting around five percent. ‘The government’s priorities of maintaining social stability — by controlling inflation and containing any emerging property bubble — will continue to heavily influence the direction of the property market,’ Moody’s said in a report released Thursday.”

Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum to Present “Design with the Other 90%: Cities” at the United Nations  “…the second in a series of themed exhibitions by Cooper-Hewitt that demonstrate how design can address the world’s most critical issues, opens Oct. 15 at the United Nations and runs through Jan. 9, 2012. The exhibition will explore design solutions to the challenges created by rapid urban growth in informal settlements, commonly referred to as slums.”  Read more from PR Newswire.

Istanbul could be split in two “The prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a former Istanbul mayor, has announced what he described as a “wild project” to split the city into European and Asian sides to make it easier to govern. ‘We will build two new cities in Istanbul due to high population,’ Erdogan said, announcing his party’s manifesto for June elections. ‘One on the European side and one on the Anatolian side.’ Istanbul’s official population is soon expected to reach 17 million, with thousands more unregistered people living in the city.” Read more from the Guardian.

Tel Aviv’s Skyline in 2025 “Perhaps in light of this recent history, the new city master plan makes a concerted effort to regulate the controversial topic of tall building construction – defining for the first time where new skyscrapers will be allowed, and where existing skylines will be preserved. At the same time, the plan would grant an official (and likely irreversible) stamp of approval for new skyscrapers in certain sensitive and controversial areas, in some cases ignoring the vociferous opposition of neighborhood groups.” Read more from Sustainable City Blog.

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