Can Cities Adapt and Renew at the Same Time?

However, within this basic hierarchy our needs should change with age, as we develop. The psychologist Erikson famously defined four main stages of adult development. He proposed that we could not pass through the latter stages
until we had passed through the former ones.
An ascetic essay from 1966 called ‘Planners’ People’ proves that planners had always aroused suspicion from those who questioned their objectivity. In this case criticism came from within their own profession. The authors – professional town-planners – asked why it was that planners’ drawings for downtown development schemes were always populated with the same ‘stock-cast ‘of six characters. These were always white, upper middle-class, law-abiding, cultured, and professional – just like the planners themselves

THE DIRT

mexicocity
Can cities with decades, hundreds, or even thousands of years of history adapt to economic, population, and climate change? Can they renew themselves in the process? At the Innovative Metropolis conference organized by the Brookings Institution and Washington University in St. Louis, a few urban experts, Valente Souza, iQh; Alexandros Washburn, urban design chief, City of New York; and Seng Kuan, Sam Fox School, Washington University in St. Louis, explained the legacies that are shaping Mexico City, New York City, and Shanghai, three of the world’s biggest megalopolises, and the approaches they are taking to adapt, with varying degrees of success.

All cities have deep geographic, hydrologic, geological contexts, said Souza. Mexico City, set within a volcanic range, is seen by geologists as sitting upon a “great bowl of jello,” meaning it’s seismically insecure. Early settlers in Mexico City thousands of years ago knew the city’s terrain and…

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