What makes a better city?
In many people’s minds, a better city is a city with tall skyscrapers, huge industrial zones, big commercial buildings, high-end condominiums and modern infrastructures.
It sounds like a role for big players, businesses and governments. And cities will keep competing with other cities to be bigger, smarter and more developed than ever.
Lest we forget, those ideas of developments of a city are also the cause of many problems that we face in the world. Sustainability, overcrowding, pollution, traffic and social issues are some of the common ones that we face in a city.
Cities with mega developments are probably the ‘better city’ definition for the big players out there. Does this definition of a ‘city’ relevant to the regular citizens on the streets?
What is the true definition of a ‘better city’?
The development of a better city does not only consist of material developments, but also the development of our mentality, sustainability, and living conditions.
The basic principles of better cities, by the Circles Project is perhaps a good definition of what a good city should focus on.
Ecology – cities should have a deep and integrated relationship with nature.
Economic – cities should be based on an economy organised around the social needs of all citizens.
Politics – cities should have an enhanced emphasis on engaged and negotiated civic involvement.
Culture – cities should actively develop ongoing processes for dealing with the uncomfortable intersections of identity and difference.
And this is where every single citizen has a part to play in making a better city.
How can we be part of building a better city, whether we are a mayor, developer, engineer, shopkeeper or merely a housewife? Everyone plays a role.
What does a better city mean to you?