SAY BIG DATA ONE MORE TIME. As seen here.
Built for over a million people, the city of Ordos was designed to be the crowning glory of Inner Mongolia.
Doomed to incompletion however, this futuristic metropolis now rises empty out of the deserts of northern China. Only 2% of its buildings were ever filled; the rest has largely been left to decay, abandoned mid-construction, earning Ordos the title of China’s Ghost City.
Last year I travelled to Inner Mongolia for myself, to get a closer look at the bizarre, ghost metropolis of Ordos… and the experience, as I would discover, was far stranger than anything I could have prepared for.
THE GHOST TOWN OF INNER MONGOLIA
China’s property market is in a strange place. With a population reckoned at 1,351,000,000 and rising fast, the resultant boom in property development has led to scores of new-made millionaires and a rapidly growing elite class; at the same time however, analysts fear that this property bubble is set to burst.
The country itself owes coming on for a trillion dollars in debt. Meanwhile, a billion people are waking up to the possibilities of fast cars, smartphones, broadband Internet and credit cards.
Here is my review of Second Hand Spaces.
Edited by Michael Ziehl, Sarah Osswald, Oliver Hasemann and Daniel Schnier, it intends to contribute to a better understanding of the processes behind the transformation of vacant spaces into recycled resources as a result of “self-determined adaptation of buildings and brownfields to the changed needs of their users”:
At vacant sites, second hand spaces draw on the atmosphere, the traces, the remains, and the history of their previous uses. Their actors develop an individual aesthetic out of the site that stands out due to its simplicity and improvised quality. New ideas are tested, and elements of surprise are created in the city. Second hand spaces evolve against the background of different demands on urban spaces and provide opportunities for interaction, participation, and start-ups. They open up new courses of action for urban planning and at the same time make a contribution to the sustainable design of urban change. In nine essays, twenty-seven experts highlight the backgrounds, actors, and effects of second hand spaces based on fifteen projects from Europe, resulting in thematic links to current social discourses throughout the book.
The winners of the European Cities and Regions of the Future 2014/15.
Click on the image to read the report.
We all know how rankings influence policies and at the same we all know what’s behind rankings… Well, worth checking.
THE WALKABLE CITY: Urbanist Jeff Speck on cars, “gas-belching, time-wasting, life-threatening prosthetic device.”
Jan Gehl on changing mindsets about urban planning and living. [18mins.]
Suggestion for simple city improvement policy:
In this city, everything will be done to invite people to walk and bicycle as much as possible in the course of their day-to-day doings.
Opening Plenary of the EFC AGA and Conference in Copenhagen on 31.05.13.
- Technology is neither good nor bad; nor is it neutral.
- Invention is the mother of necessity.
- Technology comes in packages, big and small.
- Although technology might be a prime element in many public issues, nontechnical factors take precedence in technology-policy decisions.
- All history is relevant, but the history of technology is the most relevant.
- Technology is a very human activity - and so is the history of technology.