The importance of people as the focus of Urban Design and dynamics has been the focus of modern business for the last two decades, urban designers are slowly joining the customerrization revolution which retailers have found they can ignore at their peril, so its definitely time to get out of our silos and ask our customers – people in the street what they want – I’m not sure that simply “observing them” is enough – we have to speak to them as well!

The power of the network

Thinking about the future of cities is not a new challenge. From Christopher Wren’s plan for the post-fire rebuilding of London in 1666 to Ebenezer Howards’s Garden City concept, to Le Corbusier, to Bladerunner, human ingenuity has been tasked with anticipating the future.

A problem, if we care to admit it, is that these plans tend to fail. Look at what replaced Wren’s ideas: more of the same. Or, consider the legacy of post-war housing and the New Towns movement: social and spatial isolation. Car dependency. Traffic congestion.

Why should this be?

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