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Architecture, Best Practices, Cities, Community Engagement, Sustainable Development, Urban Design, Urban Planning, Weekly Roundup

Weekly Roundup 062– 30th April to 6th May


UDC Weekly roundup

‘What Would Jane Jacobs Do?’
Authored by Janette Sadik-Khan and Seth Solomonow

This week marked a worldwide celebration of Jane Jacobs’ 100th birthday! Even Google had a lovely doodle in her honour.
Needless to say there were a host of articles online that paid tribute to her work, revisted her work, highlighted her work and so on. Our pick of this week is by none other than Janette Sadik-Khan and Seth Solomonow.
The article posits that ‘it’s not just a matter of livability or quality of life, but a long-term strategy for a denser urban future, one that is environmentally rational and economically vital.’
While also claiming that ‘paradoxically, what is most needed to achieve Jane Jacobs’s vision is to deploy a Robert Moses strategy—redesigning our streets quickly and decisively for an increasingly urban age, this time committed to accommodating population growth and offering residents more options for getting around without a car.’
By the way, how many of you knew that Michael Bloomberg, former New York City Mayor described Sadik-Khan as the child that Jane Jacobs and Robert Moses never had!

Read the whole piece here.

Published by Citylab.


‘Downtown is for People’
Published by Fortune Classic

Most of us know that Jane Jacobs’ seminal book was The Death and Life of Great American Cities published in 1961. However, not many know that the book was a culmination of three years of ideation that started with an research publication in Fortune magazine in 1958 called “Downtown is for People”. The piece offered an early view of her ideas on city life, what made it worthwhile for both passersby and local residents. She argued that the “magnetism” of cities was what “made people want to come into the city and to linger there.” She urged readers to “…get out and walk. Walk, and you will see that many of the assumptions on which the [redevelopment] projects depend are visibly wrong.” Cities, she argued, are not like suburbs and should not be made to appeal to the scale and ideals of the suburbs.

Read the publication here.


‘Remembering Jane Jacobs’
Created by Jim Epstein

An appreciation of the great urban critic and author Jane Jacobs that aired on Channel Thirteen the week following Jacob’s death in 2006.

About Vidhya Mohankumar

Vidhya Mohankumar is an architect and urban designer with over a decade of work experience in India, Ireland and the United States and a passion for creating livable cities. She is the founder of Urban Design Collective (UDC), a collaborative platform for architects, urban designers and planners to create livable cities through participatory planning. Vidhya also advocates sustainable development through training and capacity building programmes for various stakeholder groups and also within academia through her association with a number of universities as guest faculty. In other parallel albeit real universes, she is a wishful artist, an avid wanderer, a constant gardener and a newly enthused cook.


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