Five Rules for Tomorrow's Cities
240 pages, 6 x 9
20 photos, 20 illustrations
Release Date:16 Jan 2020

Five Rules for Tomorrow's Cities

Design in an Age of Urban Migration, Demographic Change, and a Disappearing Middle Class

Island Press
How we design our cities over the next four decades will be critical for our planet. If we continue to spill excessive greenhouse gas into the atmosphere, we will run out of time to keep our global temperature from increasing. Since approximately 80% of greenhouse gases come from cities, it follows that in the design of cities lies the fate of the world.
As urban designers respond to the critical issue of climate change they must also address three cresting cultural waves: the worldwide rural-to-urban migration; the collapse of global fertility rates; and the disappearance of the middle class. In Five Rules for Tomorrow’s Cities, planning and design expert Patrick Condon explains how urban designers can assimilate these interconnected changes into their work.
Condon shows how the very things that constrain cities—climate change, migration, financial stress, population change—could actually enable the emergence of a more equitable and resource-efficient city. He provides five rules for urban designers: (1) See the City as a System; (2) Recognize Patterns in the Urban Environment; (3) Apply Lighter, Greener, Smarter Infrastructure; (4) Strengthen Social and Economic Urban Resilience; and (5) Adapt to Shifts in Jobs, Retail, and Wages.
In Five Rules for Tomorrow’s Cities, Condon provides grounded and financially feasible design examples for tomorrow’s sustainable cities, and the design tools needed to achieve them.
This book offers a contemporary grounding of the critical issues of our times in terms of built environment professionals and their roles in a global context....This is an excellent reading for studies in the built environment – key historical figures are referred to and recent global case studies serve to shore the relevance of their enduring legacy into focus once again. Housing Studies
The book’s exemplary organization, readability, and convincing message deserves more attention than most novels. Manhattan Book Review
Design professionals face a different and perplexing task: planning for a world with few babies, many old people, many impecunious young people, and a thin crust of the wealthy,...Condon’s refreshingly novel collection of examples for the future include Vienna, Mumbai, Sao Paulo, Vancouver, and Oregon. His discussion of Vienna’s century-long policy of taxing land to build housing is worth the price of the book in itself. Planning
In Five Rules for Tomorrow's Cities, Condon also provides grounded and financially feasible design examples for tomorrow's sustainable cities, and the design tools needed to achieve them. Midwest Book Review
In this succinct text, [Condon is] providing practical solutions to difficult questions. His experience as an urban planner and, subsequently, as an academic enable him to provide thoughtful, reflective insights on how cities must internally change over time, and how these shifts will impinge on residents as inevitable adjustments become necessary...His assessment offers an optimistic outlook for those areas that proactively endeavor to alleviate expensive financial and social costs of urban living in the future... ...Recommended. Choice
Condon writes persuasively and in considerable detail about his very reasonable five rules. Urban Design Group
This is a masterpiece of urban thought, offering both an informed analysis of the challenges facing cities and a set of admirably clear and practical proposals for overcoming them. Patrick Condon has drawn on decades of hands-on urban experience to create a handbook that should be on the desk of every municipal leader. Doug Saunders, columnist at the Globe and Mail, author of "Arrival Cities"
This book's 'simple design rules for complex times' offer a much needed alternative to a profession obsessed with techno-green fixes and utopian whimsy. Condon translates 'systems thinking' into a practical urban design idea, that has the ability to scale up. He shows how changes brought by immigration, aging, and lack of affordability are not just footnotes to a design ideology, but essential design determinants. This concise, hopeful guide is an inspired fusion of big-picture thinking and practical design. Emily Talen, Professor of Urbanism, University of Chicago, author of "Neighborhood"
Hooray for Patrick Condon! In this eminently lucid and cogent book, he charts a sensible path through the daunting challenges that are now emerging for city-makers of all kinds. His recommendations in response are intelligent and remarkably practical. While his picture of the urban future is not pollyanna, neither is it despairing. We had better get with this program; as Condon points out, the next four decades will be pivotal for cities, and for us all. Michael Mehaffy, Senior Researcher, Ax:son Johnson Foundation, author of "Cities Alive"
Patrick Condon has over 30 years of experience in sustainable urban design: first as a professional city planner and then as a teacher and researcher. Condon started his academic career in 1985 at the University of Minnesota before moving to the University of British Columbia in 1992. After acting as the director of the landscape architecture program, he became the James Taylor Chair in Landscape and Liveable Environments. In that capacity, he has worked to advance sustainable urban design in scores of jurisdictions in the US, Canada, and Australia. He and his research partners collaborated with the City of North Vancouver to produce a 100-year plan to make the city carbon-neutral by 2107. Condon and his partners received the Canadian Institute of Planners Award for Planning Excellence, an ASLA award for research, and the BC Union of Municipalities Award of Excellence for this work. He was the founding chair of the new UBC Master of Urban Design program where his teaching and research are now concentrated. Condon is the author of Seven Rules for Sustainable Communities.
Author's Note

Chapter 1:       The Three Waves That Are Changing Cities Forever
Chapter 2:       Urban Design Responses to the Three Great Waves
Chapter 3:       Rule One: See the City as a System
Chapter 4:       Rule Two: Recognize Patterns in Urban Environments
Chapter 5:       Rule Three: Apply Lighter, Greener, Smarter Infrastructure
Chapter 6:       Rule Four: Strengthen Social Resilience through Affordable Housing Design
Chapter 7:       Rule Five: Adapt to Shifts in Jobs, Retail, and Wages

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