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The Death & Life of Great American Cities

Jane Jacobs

robin chang

on 24 October 2012

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Transcript of The Death & Life of Great American Cities

Assimilating children Death & Life of Great American Cities Jane Jacobs Reflections From Jane Herself Diversity is not the root cause of traffic congestion, which is caused by vehicles and not people in themselves.
Lively diverse area encourage walking.
Erosion of cities or attrition of automobiles?? (338) Destruction of social capital A reaction.... A critical citizen... Biography & Book Ebenezer Howard
Le Corbusier
Lewis Mumford

Garden City
Radiant City
City Beautiful Part 1: The Peculiar Nature of Cities
Part 2: The Conditions for Diversity
Part 3: Forces of Decline and Regeneration
Part 4: Different Tactics "...this new use (or uses) ought to be in accord with the district's character...(158)" Journalist/Activist Journalist/Activist/Planner Death and Life of Great American Cities Diverse Use Mobility and Transportation Sources Zoning Vancouver, BC, Canada Kitimat Map:
1) http://www.kitimat.ca/EN/main/municipal/zoning-planning/zoning-map.html
Vancouver Photos:
4) Pig Car and Blue Angel Programme: Documentation of Dr. Axel Friedrich, Berlin
5) Traffic congestion and road expansion: courtesy of Aditya Mahalana, Jakarta
6) Rodwin, Lloyd. 'Neighbours are Needed.' November 5, 1961. NYTimes. http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/08/17/reviews/jacobs.html. New York City, NY.
7) Wendt, Mathias. 'The Importance of Death and Life of Great American Cities (1961) by Jane jacobs to the Profession of Urban Planning. New Visions for Public Affairs, vol 1, spring 2009. University of Delaware. Newark, DE.
Jane Jacobs vs Robert Moses :
9) http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2007-aug-downtown-frankenstein-robert-moses-and-haydon-burns
Califonia streets:
10) http://www.curatormagazine.com/andrewsmallman/re-examining-the-suburbs/
11) http://bureaublog.wordpress.com/2012/02/14/attitudes-towards-cities/
Nordend streets:
12) http://domz60.wordpress.com/2012/10/09/recipe-for-a-vibrant-street/
13) http://affordablehousinginstitute.org/blogs/us/2008/03/slums-a-municipal-definition.htmlhttp://www.epa.gov/dced/case/eightp_p1.htm
14) http://www.preternaturalpost.com/2012/gossip-its-everywhere/happy-urban-couple-in-big-city/
Car 1950:
15) http://auto.howstuffworks.com/1950-1959-cadillac.htm
16) http://bowalleyroad.blogspot.de/2009/02/developments-evil-twin.html
17) http://www.ledcor.com/our-projects/properties/retail-properties-(1)/skyview-power-centre?from=list&categoryid=66
Fast Food Nation book:
19) http://www.amazon.com/Fast-Food-Nation-Dark-All-American/dp/0553529005 ´Nordend, Boston " Traffic arteries, alone with parking lots, gas stations and drive ins, are powerful and insistent instruments of city destruction." (338) "1. More than one primary function: preferably more than two...
2. Short blocks....
3. Mingle buildings...
4. Dense concentration of people..."(150-151) Los Angeles Sidewalks-> bring together people, not in an intimate way
Sum of casual public contact -> public identity, respect and trust.
Sense of belonging
Trust can not be institutionalized The sum of such casual, public contact at a local level-- most of it fortuitous, most of it associated with errands[...]is a feeling for the public identity of people, a web of public respect and trust, and a resource in time of personal or neighborhood need. The absence of this trust is a disaster to a city street. Its cultivation cannot be institutionalized Balance
People's determination to have essential privacy
Simultaneous wishes for different degrees of contact, enjoyment or help from the people around.
"This balance is largely made up of small, sensitively managed details..."(59) The ballet of the good city sidewalk never repeats itself from place to place, and in any once place is always replete with new improvisations. Social capital "The district, and indeed as many of its internal parts as possible, must serve more than one primary function; preferably more than two..."(150)
"Most blocks must be short; that is, streets and opportunities to turn corners must be frequent.."(178)
"But we blame automobile for too much. Suppose automobile had never been invented, or that they have been neglected and we traveled instead in efficient, convenient, speedy, comfortable, mechanized mass transit. Undoubtably we would save immense sums which might be put to better use. But they might not..." (338 - 339)
"Removing pedestrians gives very little more room to cars..." (345) “Un espacio público exitoso es un lugar donde las personas se sienten cómodas compartiéndolo con desconocidos” Jane Jacobs, 1 Idea of segregation Slums
Lack of order Gardens
Safe Streets are the most vital part of a city. Low delinquency rate
Cheerful atmosphere
Mixed uses Higher rate of crimes per capita
People spending time in cars and not on the streets
Homogeneous uses “This is something everyone knows: A well-used city street is apt to be a safe street. A deserted city street is apt to be unsafe.” Buildings must be facing the street
There should be eyes upon the street from the buildings lining the street
The sidewalk should be used continuously
Children are able to play on sidewalks and streets.
Neighborhood streets should be as narrow as possible and accommodate only slow moving traffic. The lesson that city dwellers have to take responsibility for what goes on in city streets is taught again and again to children on sidewalks which enjoy a local public life.

They can absorb it astonishingly early. They show they have absorbed it by taking it for granted that they, too, are part of the management.

They volunteer (before they are asked) directions to people who are lost; they tell a man he will get a ticket if he parks where he thinks he is going to park; they offer unsolicited advice to the building superintendent to use rock salt instead of a chopper to attack the ice.

The presence or absence of this kind of street bossiness in city children is a fairly good tip-off to the presence or absence of responsible adult behavior toward the sidewalk and the children who use it. Cities with the above features naturally generate:
Sense of Community
Trust oil dependency
climate change
obesity epidemic “Turn right if you’ve made it.” Never has our national geography been so precisely organized by income.
Photo courtesy of Howie Frumkin. When nearby is still far away: thanks to code requirements for walls and ditches, even adjacent shopping is not reachable on foot. Schools, sports facilities, and other public institutions, ever larger, become ever farther apart, and can be reached only by car. Fewer than 15% of American children walk or bike to school, down from over 50% in the 1970s. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeff-speck/10-worst-things-suburban-sprawl_b_761574.html#s155920&title=10_Big_Footprint “Not TV or illegal drugs but the automobile has been the chief destroyer of American communities.”
― Jane Jacobs, Dark Age Ahead (2004) German city- Leipzig
Mexican city- Morelia (597,897) (533,000) 1,787 hab/km² 570,6 hab/km², “Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.” (37) Precious and indispensable everywhere
Small settlements
"In the city everyone does not–only those you choose to tell will know much about you. This is one of the attributes of cities that is precious to most city people... "(58) Privacy Contact Refers to features of social organization, such as trust, norms, and networks, that can improve the efficiency of society by facilitating coordinated actions (Putnam,1993). "These networks are a city's irreplaceable social capital. Whenever the capital is lost, from whatever cause, the income from it disappears, never to return until and unless new capital is slowly and chancily accumulated" (138). Bowling Alone: America's Declining Social Capital (1995) Fast Food Nation by Erin Schlossen
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