Cities

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Chicago has encouraged green roofs to reduce water runoff and energy consumption in buildings. Sookie/flickr

Why cities are a rare good news story in climate change

Mayors from the around the world are at the Vatican to discuss climate change, a global issue that's proving to be most effectively addressed at the local level.
Nigeria’s plans for a new modern city need to be boosted so that they deliver a metropolis like the Al Maryah Island in Abu Dhabi. Shutterstock

Why Nigeria’s plans for a dream Eldorado city are not radical enough

Rather than just becoming a financial venture, the Eko Atlantic experiment can be carried further at no extra cost to become the hub to transform good governance in Nigeria and West Africa.
Historic: weather patterns similar to what’s causing the drought in California are happening in Brazil. Hudsӧn/flickr

Megacity drought: Sao Paulo withers after dry ‘wet season’

The same persistent weather pattern bringing hot, dry conditions to California is likely connected to a punishing drought in the Sao Paulo area in Brazil.
The Separation Tree in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne, marking where Victoria’s separation from New South Wales was celebrated in 1850, is dead after two attacks by vandals. Gregory Moore

Acts of arborial violence: tree vandals deprive us all

Tree vandals after better sea views or with political goals deprive everyone of the benefits trees provide. Despite costing local councils thousands in replacement trees, they are rarely caught.
Packed but greener than many: The mass transit system in Delhi contributes to its lower-than-average carbon footprint ranking. Stephan Rebernik

How green is your city: towards an index of urban sustainability

Emerging research looks at new ways to measure the ecological footprint of cities, a key step to making them more environmentally benign and perhaps more livable.
The Boston-area transit authority has had major disruptions and shut-downs this winter. MaxVT/Flickr

Extreme weather exposes the vulnerability of our cities to climate change

Despite the Patriots winning the Super Bowl, January and February were not kind months for the people of Boston and New England. By February 10th, more than 60 inches of snow in 30 days fell on the city…
Cities are always much more complex than their popular perceptions. Daniel Lee

Perth could become a model for 21st-century urban planning

What is the future of Australia’s wealthiest state? The Conversation, in conjunction with Griffith REVIEW and Curtin University, is publishing a series of articles exploring the unique issues facing Western…
City planners are looking to redevelop the eastern part of midtown Manhattan. How can they preserve its character, economic importance, and functionality? Wikimedia Commons

Hong Kong on the Hudson?

Good historians know that history rarely teaches clear lessons. When it does, we should heed them. In the 1920s, urban visionaries completely refashioned midtown Manhattan, making it the most modern and…
The Gold Coast is one of Australia’s climate “hot spots” — vulnerable to rising seas, storms and erosion. Phalinn Ooi/Flickr

Cities could be the secret to fighting climate change

The world’s population could reach almost 10 billion by 2050. Most people will live in cities. To accommodate an additional 3 billion people, we’ll need to build the equivalent of one new city, that can…
The inner suburbs of Melbourne are surprisingly more leafy than the outer suburbs. Andrew

Fewer trees leave the outer suburbs out in the heat

When you look out of your window in the morning, how many trees do you see? Your answer might depend on what suburb you live in. As you go further from the city centre, the amount of tree cover in a suburb…
Denmark’s capital, Copenhagen, offers an idea of how pleasant and practical the Velotopian dream of a bike-friendly city might be. AAP/Visit Denmark

Utopia: seriously, good urban planning should aspire to it

The Australian television satire Utopia invited the public along for a laugh that architects and planners have been sharing for decades. We laugh at the idea of utopia to disassociate ourselves from the…
Does this look like a conservative city to you? Ixnayonthetimmay

Mesa’s ‘most conservative’ title is puzzling

Mesa, Arizona: a place with wide streets and narrow minds. Or so goes a once popular saying about this traditionally laid-back, conservative community that came into official existence in 1883 as a Mormon…

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