EngagingCities
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Black Lives Matter protests are showing how city leaders and transit agencies must reprioritize infrastructure investments, a public transit official argues.

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Creating opportunities for people and communities to engage is a first step towards building public trust, especially in shaping the experience for overlooked communities to participate.

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Many addresses on the North Side are reflected in vastly different neighborhoods on the South Side. This project pairs residents with their counterparts across town to explore the divisions in their city.

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New studies of Lisbon and Toronto offer the latest evidence for the power of safe infrastructure to encourage more cycling in cities — and speak to the perils of relying on historical data.

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Planners of all types have a role to play in addressing racial injustice by connecting each decision to its effects on the whole community.

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The pandemic changed public meetings, but only in form, not format. The current format prizes people who can show up and who have time to study proposals beforehand, stacking the deck in favor of commenters with 9-to-5 hours, access to childcare, food security and a level of comfort visiting a government building.

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New Zealand’s new national urban development policy prohibits parking minimums and increases allowable building heights near transit stations. This is a watershed moment for the country’s cities and towns.

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How do we reimagine streets to create more just and equitable cities? How do we ensure safe, accessible, and affordable transportation for all? What role does technology play in building more vibrant, diverse, and unified communities? Listen to this conversation between eight city builders to explore future scenarios for our streets and their social, environmental, and economic consequences.

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What counts as "neighborhood character," and who gets to define it? In many cities, it's wealthy, white homeowners who have lived there for decades.

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A unanimous appeals court decision this week quashed what would have represented a significant change in the city’s approach to reshaping neighborhoods. This reversal is a resounding blow to community advocates who hoped the challenge would force a deeper study of the rezoning’s racial and socioeconomic implications on Inwood — and serve as a milestone for advancing more equitable city planning.

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Urban planning studies of community values have always shown green spaces to have a high priority, but sadly the spread of ill-thought urban development and infrastructure has eroded this vital asset. In the last few years more than 70 parks and green canopies have been destroyed or threatened.

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A unique urban planning firm, made up entirely of Black women, is making a difference in communities of color.

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In a dialogue published in our annual newsletter, two ITDP Directors, Michael Kodransky and Bernardo Baranda, discuss their respective cities in terms of mobility growth, local policy, and how the coronavirus has affected movement of people. 

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This picture-perfect medieval city is celebrating its 900th anniversary, but its innovative design makes it one of the world’s most sustainable and liveable cities.

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Years ago, Topeka city leaders heard criticism from stakeholders that the government was not transparent. City leaders are now committed to providing the public with timely and reliable information on decisions and performance.

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On Thursday, June 26, MPC and Enterprise Community Partners hosted a conversation with several community leaders to discuss the short and long term impacts of the COVID-19 on Chicago’s immigrant communities, necessary actions, and the intersections with the Movement for Black Lives.

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The Bandung project sought to increase access to public procurement information and improve various actors’ ability to monitor the public contracting system, including government staff, vendors, civic groups and journalists. Despite strong initial interest and uptake of the data, maintaining engagement has proved challenging. In this post, Michael introduces the project and offers words of advice to those carrying out similar initiatives. 

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When cities adapt smart city solutions to meet emerging needs, they risk jeopardizing public confidence in future initiatives. Leaders in the smart city space emphasize the importance of engaging citizens to get their support for smart city projects.

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Learning from Bryant Park: Revitalizing Cities, Towns, and Public Spaces, is an entertaining and important book for urbanists across America.

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Microsoft funds Digital Skills Ed, how human-centered design helped city officials in Seattle massive increase testing for COVID-19, the U.S. Senate introduces a new $100 billion broadband infrastructure bill, and more.

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Among the complex medley of moving parts that guide protest movements, urban design might seem like a fairly peripheral concern. But try telling that to demonstrators from Houston to Beijing, two cities that have geographic characteristics that complicate public protest. Low urban density can thwart mass participation. Limited public space can deprive protesters of the visibility and hence the momentum they need to sustain themselves. On those occasions when proceedings turn messy or violent, alleyways, parks, and labyrinthine apartment buildings can mean the difference between detention and escape.

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Cities and communities are beginning to develop new ways of responding to the COVID-19 pandemic that seek to make the most of the collective intelligence of urban areas.

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A study found that gamified e-participation is linked to increased engagement, motivation, civic learning and enjoyment amongst other outcomes. 

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Smart city leaders from Houston, New Orleans and Columbus, Ohio, discussed their vision for tomorrow's cities following widespread disruptions brought on by the pandemic, economic hardships and social unrest.

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A year-long trial of ways in which residents South Ribble can get more involved in decision-making in the district is set to begin. Amongst the changes to be tested is a revamp of the borough’s five longstanding “My Neighbourhood Forums”, which provide a platform for residents to raise concerns and requests for action in their area.

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