UN-HABITAT: World Urban Forum 4 – Theme: Harmonious Urbanization: The Challenge of Balanced Territorial Development

“World Urban Forum 4 will be held in Nanjing, China on 03 – 06 November 2008

The World Urban Forum was established by the United Nations to examine one of the most pressing issues facing the world today: rapid urbanization and its impact on communities, cities, economies and policies. It is projected that in the next fifty years, two-thirds of humanity will be living in towns and cities. A major challenge is to minimize burgeoning poverty in cities, improve the urban poor’s access to basic facilities such as shelter, clean water and sanitation and achieve environment-friendly, sustainable urban growth and development.”

SOURCE: UN-HABITAT.:. World Urban Forum | Theme: Harmonious Urbanization: The Challenge of Balanced Territorial Development.

Breathing Buildings

Azure Magazine has published an interview by Paige Magarrey with Paul Kephart of Rena Creek about his work with architects Renzo Piano and William McDonough in creating living buildings.

read more @ the SOURCE: AZURE MAGAZINE

Super Shopping Centre opens in London – mixed reactions

Westfield London – a new 1.7 billion pound shopping centre has opened to mixed reviews. Many think that the architecture may be understated and could be more grand and uplifting and that it feels like a place just for retailers to push their wares.

In recent years more and more shopping malls are becoming the ‘town squares’ of suburbs and cities with more and more emphasis placed on the secondary uses of shopping malls such as dining out, concerts, people watching and general passive recreation rather than consumption. Although these secondary activities are not welcome by some shopping centre managements.

What do you think of the new Westfield London merely a place to shop or does it add more to the community and area?

The Ground Floor: Best of the Best: ULI’s Global Awards for Excellence Winners

Five outstanding developments were announced today at ULI’s 2008 fall meeting as the winners of ULI’s Global Awards for Excellence competition, widely recognized as the land use industry’s most prestigious recognition program.

read more @ the SOURCE: The Ground Floor: Best of the Best: ULI’s Global Awards for Excellence Winners.

Improving Montreal will take more than attracting one star architect

Henry Aubin, The Gazette’s regional affairs columnist, heralds the coming of star French architect Paul Andreu to a corner of the Quartier des spectacles as, if not a mythical event, “one that will breathe a breath of fresh air for the city’s stuffy insular architectural establishment.”

SOURCE: The Gazette – Improving Montreal will take more than attracting one star architect.

London Mayor developing recovery plan for capital’s economy

Mayor of London Boris Johnson announced today that he and his team are developing an Economic Recovery Action Plan designed to support Londoners and businesses through the predicted economic hardship ahead.

The Mayor has already confirmed several steps he is taking to support London, which include:

* Refocusing the London Development Agency’s £400m budget towards promoting jobs, skills and economic growth;
* Investing £600m in training to give Londoners the skills they need to find and stay in work;
* Pushing ahead with over 50 major infrastructure projects, such as upgrades to the tube and Crossrail, to ensure that London remains globally competitive.

SOURCE: Greater London Authority – Press Release
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ADB Reinforces Support for Urban Development in Bangladesh

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is providing additional funds to improve the basic services and infrastructure in small and medium-sized towns of Bangladesh.

The $87 million loan, sourced from ADB’s Special Funds, will be released in phases. The fund disbursements to each town are linked to governance reform and improvement in urban services.

SOURCE: Asian Development Bank – ADB Reinforces Support for Urban Development in Bangladesh.

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