As land becomes increasingly valuable, more cities are looking upwards to accommodate growth. Tall buildings create their own challenges however. But one key challenge – shadows and darkness – may be resolved shortly. Several approaches to reflect dispersed light into spaces that would otherwise be shrouded in darkness, including moving panels and curved windows, could contribute to more livable spaces in the skyscraper city.
Major increases in city land values, a side-effect of a revived appreciation for urbanity, have pushed planners, developers and designers to reconsider formerly overlooked spaces. A creative and pragmatic outlook is useful to maximize the value of these spaces, including New York’s Highline and Miami’s Underline. Now an exciting new generation of designs are emerging, such as Toronto’s Under Gardiner and New York’s Lowline. The marriage of market and creativity is a powerful force to enhance our cities.
Much has been made of the smart city’s potential to improve technical coordination and efficiency, but where do people fit into this brave new world? Public space thought leaders Gehl Architects think Montreal is on the right track. In an optimistic article, they detail the City’s digital/physical Faire Montreal (Make Montreal) initiative to engage residents on 180 tangible projects. A model for other cities to follow?