Bogotá is largely credited with originating the concept of “open streets” —where city roads are closed to car traffic and given over to people for fun and fitness—but it has grown beyond that city, surfacing in Pennsylvania.Read More
An inner city Detroit program places 90 percent of graduates in well-paying tech jobs by teaching them how to code. It may serve as a viable path for Philadelphia citizens, as well.Read More
Cars heavily influence building planning in the U.S. due to a historical preference for suburbs, but a town in Illinois improved its economy by thinking like a city. They created transit-oriented development which prioritizes pedestrians and attracts millennials.Read More
Despite overwhelming evidence that play is vital for children’s physical, emotional and cognitive development, in recent decades, due to many factors, children’s outdoor play opportunities have declined markedly. For 15 years, KaBOOM! has been leading playground construction around the country, mostly in neighborhoods where at least 70 percent of children qualify for the federal government’s free and reduced-cost lunch program.Read More
When adults are asked what values they think youth sports actually reinforce most, they say competitiveness and the importance of winning. The Positive Coaching Alliance provides teaching tools that help coaches redefine the idea of “winning” from something that is reflected on a scoreboard to something that is reflected in a child’s character.Read More
A Dallas urban neighborhood was dilapidated with abandoned storefronts and offered no vitality for pedestrians. A group of artists and community members created Build a Better Block, in which local artisans and small businesses took over a vacant block and transformed it for a limited time to encourage the ingredients for more permanent urban renewal.Read More
Alleys in Seattle were once places of illicit, illegal, and unsanitary activity. The International Sustainability Institute in Seattle began organizing music and art events to bring in people, which, in turn, cleaned-up the crime and garbage. As an urban development strategy, adjacent vacant storefronts re-opened for business and beautification could be seen in new gardens.Read More
The Oak Cliff neighborhood in Dallas suffered from recession-closed businesses and crime. Then community members used placemaking, in which people shaped their own environment to improve the quality of life, and the concept of Build a Better Block, which was a pop-up event showcasing art, food, music, and local faire. The idea gives citizens a fresh look at the possibilities through which to transform the space in which they live, and it has attracted attention across the country and around the world.Read More
Cities tend to be dangerous and difficult places to live for older residents. A private public partnership in New York is catering to seniors through small changes in the city such as para-transit options and seniors-only hours at public establishments.Read More
Despite being an island of seamen, Iceland used to experience high numbers of drownings every year, fostering a keen interest in swimming education. The government stepped up and tapped into the underground hot water generated by Iceland’s volcanic activity to create geothermal pools, which quickly became more than a humble municipal investment, but perhaps the very secret to the country’s happiness. Every town now enjoys communal pools, which create a neutral, recreational space that brings all manner of people together.Read More
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