polis: a collective blog about cities worldwide

Kate Stohr on Investing in Cities

Source: Favela Painting

The photo above is of Praça Cantão in Communidade da Santa Marta, Rio de Janeiro. The buildings were repainted by artists Jeroen Koolhaas, Dre Urhahn and young men living in the neighborhood. It is featured in the book "Design Like You Give a Damn [2]," which also features the following quote:

“Place matters. Just as we need to invest in people, we must also invest in place — and like car racing, every square meter counts. Cities that turn a blind eye to pockets of blight and violence not only put community members at greater risk, but also put themselves at greater risk for the flight of capital and jobs. This, combined with leveling of populations in many areas, and projected population decline in others, means that cities cannot count on urbanization and rising birthrates to fuel economic development. Companies can and do go ‘city shopping,’ looking for ‘creative’ places that are safe and desirable. Cities that breed cultural diversity as well as opportunity — where the walk to and from work offers spontaneity and chance inspiration — will thrive. Others will shrink, creating a different but equally challenging kind of opportunity to reinvest in open space and renew the natural environment.”

Kate Stohr, co-founder of Architecture for Humanity, in “Design Like You Give a Damn [2]: Building Change from the Ground Up,” 2012

This is part of a collection of quotes related to cities. They don’t necessarily reflect our views, just topics of interest. We welcome you to add others.

+ share