Reassembling the City
by Prof. Rob Roggema
MODERN CITIES ARE not readily adaptable environments; indeed, the core of these urban areas tends to be dominated by structures that have stood for decades, even centuries. Monolithic though the outward appearance of a city is, however, the underlying framework of regulation that governs it can be, if anything, even more rigid. Local governments and city planners who maintain and operate within this legislative system often adhere to highly inflexible regulations in the name of stability.
The drawback with this approach is that new stresses and challenges constantly face urban environments, and these challenges must be overcome using pragmatic rather than conservative thinking. Issues such as maintaining food security or building resilience to a changing climate have not been faced before, and have no equivalent in history; adhering to conventional systems is not an effective way to tackle them. Transformative change is required to ensure that cities across the world are resilient and sustainable, enabling them to respond appropriately to change without disrupting the happiness and productivity of their citizens.
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