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✊🏙 Jan Gehl on smart cities 📱 The case for public housing 🏠 Addressing the urban loneliness crisis 😔

Hey urbanists! Skepticism about Silicon Valley's claims about the transformative and disruptive power
May 6 · Issue #32 · View online
Radical Urbanist
Hey urbanists!
Skepticism about Silicon Valley’s claims about the transformative and disruptive power of urban technology has become a focus of this newsletter, and that continues in this issue with a CityLab interview with renowned Copenhagen architect Jan Gehl giving his take on smart cities. I definitely recommend reading the full piece.
I’m also very passionate about another of this week’s topics: the growing crisis of urban loneliness. The UK even appointed a minister for loneliness earlier this year in recognition of the problem. The two articles I’ve included look at how young people are suffering from it and how we might try to address it through changing the design of our cities. I have no doubt that the increasing focus on densification and shifting toward public transit, cycling, and walking will help bring people back together, but there’s so much more that needs to be done to rebuild our communities and restore social bonds that have been lost.
As always, have a great Sunday, and make sure to check out the quick listing of other great reads at the end of the article!

What role for urban tech?
Copenhagen Architect Jan Gehl Takes on Smart Cities Copenhagen Architect Jan Gehl Takes on Smart Cities
Driverless Tech Companies Face Scrutiny Over Safety Transparency
Refocusing on public housing
It’s Time to Build New, Mixed-Income Public Housing
There’s Good Besides the Bad and Ugly of Public Housing
Combatting urban loneliness
Young Americans May Feel Lonely, But It's Not an Epidemic
Understanding the Unique Challenges of Urban Loneliness
Other great reads
🗳 Nashville voters rejected a plan to massively expand public transit
🇳🇿 New Zealand’s PM Jacinda Ardern promises to find shelter for all homeless people within four weeks
🚲 The new operator of Paris’ Vélib bike-share program is doing such a bad job that ridership is plummeting and mayor Anne Hidalgo’s political future could be a risk
🇫🇷 France is investing €5 billion to revive the centres of medium-sized cities across the country
🇨🇦 Montreal mayor unveils pedestrian-friendly overhaul of main shopping street
🇵🇰 China has pledged $8 billion to help Pakistan upgrade its rail lines and improvements are already being noted by riders
🚶‍♀️ Toronto is implementing the next phase of its King Street Pilot (see issue 13 for more) by adding three dozen pedestrian-friendly spaces
🖕🏻 Amazon, headed by the world’s richest man who said he doesn’t know how to spend his money, stopped construction on a new tower in Seattle to oppose a tax designed to help the homeless
Hanna Brooks Olsen
If the choice is "employee hours tax and maybe Amazon decreases its Seattle presence and housing gets somewhat affordable again and fewer people die outside" or "no tax, unchecked Amazon growth, and housing continues to get more and more expensive," Imma take my chances on Door 1
✊❤️ Thanks for reading, and make sure to follow me on Twitter, Medium, and Instagram for even more!
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