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Connecting Places, Connecting People : A Paradigm for Urban Living in the Twenty-First Century
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What is a better community? How can we reconfigure places and transport networks to create environmentally friendly, economically sound, and socially just communities? How can we meet the challenges of growing pollution, depleting fossil fuels, rising gasoline prices, traffic congestion, traffic fatalities, increased prevalence of obesity, and lack of social inclusion?
The era of car-based planning has led to the disconnection of people and place in developed countries, and is rapidly doing so in the developing countries of the Global South. The unfolding mega-trend in technological innovation, while adding new patterns of future living and mobility in the cities, will question the relevance of face-to-face connections. What will be the ‘glue’ that holds communities together in the future?
To build better communities and to build better cities, we need to reconnect people and places. Connecting Places, Connecting People offers a new paradigm for place making by reordering urban planning principles from prioritizing movement of vehicles to focusing on places and the people who live in them. Numerous case studies, including many from developing countries in the Global South, illustrate how this can be realized or fallen short of in practical terms. Importantly, citizens need to be engaged in policy development, to connect with each other and with government agencies. To measure the connectivity attributes of places and the success of strategies to meet the needs, an Audit Tool is offered for a continual quantitative and qualitative evaluation.