New Urbanism is growing across USA!

This TED talk explains how and where. It is starting. Dead malls are retrofitted into libraries, live in art studios, retirement villages and public spaces. Massive car parks are becoming New Urban dwellings. Concrete is torn off old buried creeks. Massive highway transit zones get some side walks and trees and density, and become attractive places to build.

New Urbanism is starting and demand is growing. Two-thirds of suburban homes will not have children in them, but older baby-boomers and younger couples. And singles. The population mix is changing, and demands a variety of accommodation styles which New Urbanism can supply cheaply and abundantly, with land to spare! New spaces are being returned to local farming or local ecosystems, which then add to the local economy simply by being attractive!

The best thing about this talk is that it shows how it can happen in small stages. New Urbanism can grow in pockets without bulldozing the whole suburb first. Thinking about it after the talk, it occurs to me that this is only logical. Suburbia is characterised by vast areas of wasted space. New Urbanism is incredibly dense. Pockets can grow which soak up the populations of suburbia, and then suburbia can be gradually replaced through the normal household life cycle. Suburban blandness is gradually transformed into dense and diverse urbanism with forests and farmlands.

I can’t wait to watch it unfold!

Ellen Dunham-Jones: Retrofitting suburbia | Video on TED.com.

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