Singapore official: Asian cities can harmonize economic growth and environment

With good management, Asian cities can sustain economic growth and provide a even higher standard of living for their population, said Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for National Development Grace Fu here Wednesday.

Speaking at an event of the World Cities Summit which is held here from Tuesday, she said a key common challenge facing cities in Asia is to pursue economic growth while ensuring environmental and social sustainability.

While economic growth can bring more wealth and resource to cities, she pointed out that the distribution of wealth may be uneven, “economic growth can also widen the income disparity among the population and stress the social fabric that underpins economic and social stability.”

SOURCE: Xinhua – Singapore official: Asian cities can harmonize economic growth and environment_

City may stop urban village

A PROPOSED urban village for up to 10,000 residents in southern Redland Bay is likely to be opposed by the new Redland City Council.

Councillors are considering changes to the city’s 20-year growth plans in the wake of an election that shifted the balance of power to candidates who promised to slow down development.

The State Government, which is ultimately responsible for planning, wants the new council to provide its views on growth by next month

SOURCE: Bayside Bulletin / The Redland Times – City may stop urban village 

Guest column: Don’t expect simple solutions to complexities of flooding – DesMoinesRegister.com | The Des Moines Register

DOUGLAS M. JOHNSTON is chair of the Department of Community and Regional Planning and of the Department of Landscape Architecture at ISU wrote a great article about the Iowa floods*

During and after any catastrophe, many will review the events and ask: Why did it happen and what can be done to prevent it? The ongoing flooding in Iowa is no exception.

…….we often fail to remember is that water flows downhill. It comes from somewhere, and it goes somewhere. Anything we do that affects the flow of water will have an impact further downstream. Prairie and forest are good at capturing rainfall. Tile-drained farm fields, roofs, roads, and parking lots are less so. With fewer wetlands, prairies and forest to slow runoff or prevent it, the same rain event will send more water downstream faster.

Read more @ the SOURCE: DesMoinesRegister.com – Guest column: Don’t expect simple solutions to complexities of flooding – The Des Moines Register.

Where’s our Central Park? – Los Angeles Times

Great cities have great urban parks. Central Park in New York, Millennium Park in Chicago, Washington’s Mall. They are magnets for the key ingredients that make a successful city center: housing and hotels, shops and cafes, museums and concert halls, public festivals and recreation from active sports to leisurely strolling. They provide breathing room amid the civic bustle; they open up the densest cityscapes; they signify the heart of the heart of their hometowns.

Unfortunately, Los Angeles — a great city by most definitions — has no important downtown park. Griffith Park meets many needs, but it’s not in the center of the city. The Cornfield, north of Chinatown, is also removed from the action (and mostly not off the drawing board). The public space that links downtown’s civic center buildings may get a polish as part of the Grand Avenue project, but it’s tucked away, hemmed in by government buildings. None of these alone is the great, open-air city gathering place that L.A. needs.

SOURCE: Los Angeles Times – Where’s our Central Park?

Making San Francisco into a people-oriented city

Tim Holt of San Francisco Chronicle interviews urban planning guru, Jan Gehl about San Francisco and create urban spaces and a more pedestrain city(Ed– Maybe hard with those hills) and open air shopping.

Read more @ the SOURCE: SFGate.com – Making S.F. into a people-oriented city

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