Cities after corona – “Build back better”

City life after corona – illustration © Brian Stauffer for Foreign Policy

“Cities will come back stronger than ever after the pandemic”, says Dan Doctoroff, former deputy mayor of New York. “But when they do, it will be driven by a new model of growth.” New policies and technologies, Doctoroff argues in the magazine Foreign Policy, have to “make urban life more affordable and sustainable for more people.” And city expert Janette Sadik-Khan wants to keep some of the advantages we are experiencing during lockdown: “We can bring back cities without bringing back the traffic, the congestion, the pollution.” Foreign Policy has asked 11 urban experts for their predictions of how life in our cities will look after the coronavirus pandemic.

Joel Kotkin from the Urban Reform Institute expects more people moving to the periphery. “The next generation of suburbs, however, will have to be designed for lower emissions, more home-based work, and shorter commutes.”

Researcher Robert Muggah sees an “opportunity to build back better” after corona. “The pandemic is accelerating deeper, longer-term trends affecting cities, such as the digitalization of retail, the move to a cashless economy, the shift to remote work and virtual delivery of services, and the pedestrianization of streets.” Muggah mentions Amsterdam, along with Bristol and Melbourne, as one of the “first movers already developing plans that prioritize circular economics, climate resilience, and a radical intolerance of inequality.”

You can read the full article of Foreign Policy here

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