Saturday, 24 June 2006

The urban future

The urban economist and the SimCity lover in me loves the fact that the Metroquest computer sim (based on SimCity, natch) is being used to see future consequences of decisions.
The software has also been used with planners in Bali, Indonesia - where it showed the island was heading for serious trouble.

The island's tourism-based economy is so linked to its environment "that they're inseperable" - but the environment was under serious strain, the programme showed.

"When we went there, we discovered that they were reaching their carrying capacity on so many sustainability issues - overcrowded streets, congested arteries, brownouts for electricity on a regular basis, and at their capacity for water supply," Mr Biggs said.
Speaking of urbanism, I found this piece on the competition in Boston between a new "lifestyle centre", where the shopping centre attempts to replicate the Main Street feel, and the old-style Burlington Mall, very interesting. Was in Sembawang today for former colleagues' baby's first-month, and took a look around the town, noticing that everything seemed centralised in the neighbourhood mall. I wonder if in future neighbourhoods will move back towards a more shophousey feel?



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