This scale and speed of urbanisation has never ever happened before, this is the first time.
At this moment you are going to shape the cities for generations to come. People need to realise this is an opportunity that will never come again.
Parag Khanna, TED Talk, 2016
We are the global network civilization, and this is our map. A map of the world in which geography is no longer destiny. Instead, the future has a new and more hopeful motto: connectivity is destiny.
Linda Poon, City Lab, Sep 11, 2015
The most valuable visual information that these maps convey is the density of a particular area. Planned right, a dense city can be a positive environment for productivity. Griffiths explains that the clustering effect creates “agglomeration economies.” “If you cluster a whole lot of people close to each other, with skills that aren’t necessarily the same,” he says, “you get opportunities for new creations.”
Urban Think Tank / LafargeHolcim Foundation
Old slums actually function as villages, they’re medium rise, high density urban areas in cities. And actually you have an infinite number of diverse productive businesses going on all along in Dharavi. And what you see in the background here, in the distance, is the alternative, the modern housing block. Now what’s better? To upgrade this village or to house people in those vertical, kind segmented ghettos. I believe the village culture is much more interesting and the village must remain in the city.
For more about ETH Zurich’s Urban – Think Tank’s work on social architecture and informal development, click here.
For more about The Holcim Foundation’s support for sustainable construction, click here.
Robert Muggah, TED Talk, October 2014
So urban geographers and demographers, they tell us that it’s not necessarily the size or even the density of cities that predicts violence, no. Tokyo, with 35 million people, is one of the largest, and some might say safest, urban metropolises in the world. No, it’s the speed of urbanization that matters. I call this turbo-urbanization, and it’s one of the key drivers of fragility.
When you think about the incredible expansion of these cities, and you think about turbo-urbanization, think about Karachi. Karachi was about 500,000 people in 1947, a hustling, bustling city. Today, it’s 21 million people, and apart from accounting for three quarters of Pakistan’s GDP, it’s also one of the most violent cities in South Asia. Dhaka, Lagos, Kinshasa, these cities are now 40 times larger than they were in the 1950s.
City Lab, Emily Badger, 9 Nov 2012
The exhibition’s title – Grand Reductions – suggests the simple illustration’s power to encapsulate complex ideas. And for that reason the medium has always been suited to the city, an intricate organism that has been re-imagined (with satellite towns! in rural grids! in megaregions!) by generations of architects, planners and idealists. In the urban context, diagrams can be powerful precisely because they make weighty questions of land use and design digestible in a single sweep of the eye. But as Le Corbusier’s plan illustrates, they can also seductively oversimplify the problems of cities. These 10 diagrams have been tremendously influential – not always for the good.
For more about SPUR and their work in the San Francisco Bay Area click here.
ARTICLE / INFOGRAPHIC
Which cities will contribute the most to global growth or rank among the top 25 cities by population or per capita GDP? Which cities will contribute the largest number of children or elderly in the world? How will regional patterns of growth differ?
Andrew Marr, BBC, 2011
I think the village is the natural unit and perhaps every megacity is like a huge body crammed with millions of ghostly villages of which this is only one.
For more episodes of Andrew Marr’s Megacities, click here.