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Cities Are Good for You

The Genius of the Metropolis

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

Cities are where the twenty-first century is really going to happen. Already at the beginning of the century, we became 50% urban as a global population, and by 2050 we're going to be up to 70% urban. So cities could either be our coffin or our ark.

Leo Hollis presents evidence that cities can deliver a better life and a better world in the future. From exploring what slime mold can tell us about traffic flow, to looking at how traditional civic power structures are being overturned by Twitter, to investigating how cities all over the world are tackling climate change, population growth, poverty, shifting work patterns and the maintenance of the fragile trust of their citizens, Cities Are Good for You offers a new perspective on the city.

Combining anecdote, scientific studies, historical portraits, first-hand interviews and observations of some of the most exciting world cities, Hollis upends long-held assumptions with new questions: Where do cities come from? Can we build a city from scratch? Does living in the city make you happier or fitter? Is the metropolis of the future female? What is the relationship between cities and creativity? And are slums really all that bad?

Cities Are Good for You introduces us to dreamers, planners, revolutionaries, writers, scientists, architects, slum-dwellers and kings. Ranging globally and through time in search of answers--from the archive to the laboratory, from City Hall to the architect's desk--it is above all driven by the idea that cities are for people and by people.

From Publishers Weekly

Feb 18, 2013 – Forget the title; London-based writer and historian Hollis (The Stones of London: A History in Twelve Buildings) doesn’t make a solid case for the superiority of cities over suburbs or countryside. But having spent time in places as varied as Manhattan, Bangalore, and Venice, and having researched his subject, he has much to say about urban dynamism. He is particularly engaging when writing about slums, such as in a detailed profile of Mumbai’s Dharavi district (including its insufficient water supply and lack of public toilets); as well as on technologically sophisticated bus systems in Curtiba, Brazil, and Bogota; and on the construction of new “eco-cities” like Masdar, Abu Dhabi, and Tianjin Eco, China. However, Hollis sometimes flits from topic to topic and devotes too little attention to such megacities as Jakarta and Lagos. He also tends toward abstraction, as when describing the August 2011 London riots (“the city turned in on itself with extraordinary violence”), and can flood the reader with meaningless statistics (the millions of square feet of planned residential and commercial space in Songdo, South Korea), all of which make parts of the book read like urban studies–lite. However, these shortcomings are balanced by passages that colorfully demonstrate, through anecdotes and data, how particular cities are “extraordinary economic engines of wealth and innovation.” 55 b/w illus.
Cities Are Good for You
View in iTunes
  • $19.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Social Science
  • Published: Jul 16, 2013
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
  • Seller: INscribe Digital
  • Print Length: 304 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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