Archives for June 2013

Can we afford to improve infrastructure?

According to a new study, three existing funding pools could cover the infrastructure gap – 12 times over. Public buildings often define the impression of a city. But many are being neglected and overlooked. In the U.S., millions of children are attending deteriorating schools. Hospitals are postponing badly needed repairs. According to Business Insider, public […]

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Climate action: What can cities teach countries?

A new report from CDP links climate action with economic and social benefits. With the release of a proposed climate action plan for the U.S., President Obama brings renewed national focus to an issue that, frankly, many of the world’s leading cities long since moved beyond debating and began addressing. Specifically, how do we reduce […]

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Livability in resource extraction towns

Fermont, Quebec, Canada ©CSMO Mines. Mining opportunities have always led people to work and live in some of the most remote locations and harshest climates in the world. During the last century, as the scale of mining operations grew in complexity, the image of the lone prospector’s cabin gave way to one of large company […]

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Parametric future cities

Design rendering for Tianjin, China. With more people living in cities than ever before, we are faced with new challenges to design efficient urban infrastructure to meet the needs of a growing population and changing climate. This shifting dynamic implores us to rethink the way we plan and design our buildings and our cities. They […]

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Building tall over London

The Shard. ©AECOM Photo By David Lloyd. David Glover, AECOM’s chief executive for Building Engineering, discusses the considerations of building tall within London’s historic skyline in a post on UBM’s Future Cities blog: Jake Herson ( is managing editor of the Connected Cities blog.

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UN, SF take steps toward resilience

San Francisco. Photo by Sarah Stephinson. Faced with potential disasters that read like a list of Hollywood blockbusters, San Francisco is among the increasing number of cities that are taking steps to increase their resiliency. Three years ago, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction began a campaign to build resilient communities around the […]

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Water scarcity: Leal on Bloomberg Radio

California’s Sacramento Delta. ©AECOM Photo By David Lloyd. One of the most pressing issues of the coming century is protecting a finite supply of fresh water. Today, over seven billion people draw on the only reserve the planet has ever had; by 2025, about eight billion people will be competing for the same resource. Susan […]

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To compete, connect

Mumbai, India. ©AECOM Photo By David Lloyd. E.M. Forster’s novel, Howards End, examines social relations in turn-of-the-century England. “Only connect! … Live in fragments no longer” is the guiding exhortation of the novel; Forster encourages us to bring our ‘inner’ and ‘outer’ lives together.  While he is speaking to the lives and times of his […]

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Connect, excite, inspire with the urban sports venue

Barclays Center, home of NBA Brooklyn Nets. Photo by Bruce Damonte. Venues for different sports—football, baseball, and soccer stadiums, basketball and hockey arenas—are different animals. They have to do different things. What they have in common is the responsibilities of providing their team with a home field/court advantage, their spectators with an exciting experience, and […]

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A lesson from Giza

Great Pyramid at Giza, Egypt. Photo by Steve Burrows. As humans aggregate in ever-increasing numbers in places we call cities, the density forces us to live in the air. Tall buildings were once a symbol of confidence, marking a society as technically capable and economically strong. Now it’s simply a question of necessity. Every few […]

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