Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Bristol in the UK seems pretty amazing

Park and Slide Bristol [OFFICIAL VIDEO] from Cinematica Media on Vimeo.

Luke Jerram's "Park and Slide" was a project at Bristol's Make Sunday Special Day in May. According to the website: 96,573 people signed up for their chance to get a 'ticket to slide,' while 360 people were selected to participate. More than 65,000 people came to watch. While the City Council was first leery about the idea, they came back to Jerram and asked him to proceed.

-- Bristol Festival of Ideas

-- Bristol Legible City;-- it turns out to be the template for wayfinding systems in London and New York City, but the program is much more than a wayfinding system, especially as it develops over the course of the program, which started in 1994.

-- The lead firms involved in the project is called City_ID.  Check out the firm's page of selected publications.  Holy s***!  Mike Rawlinson, a principal with the firm, was a presenter at the

-- Making the City Playable conference

-- Make Sunday Special (an open streets project)

-- Bristol Art Weekender

-- the Watershed Media Center is a creative economy and culture ideas generation and incubation organization, which sponsors and helps to create various events

-- a Mayor and City Council committed to innovation -- I missed most of the presentation by George Ferguson, the Mayor of Bristol, but one of the things he said was very telling, about changing the mode of government and the citizens being focused on fearing change as opposed to the opportunities and hope that change can also present.

-- Bristol is one of the cities that went all in on the creation of local currency, in response to the European Depression, which I wrote about in 2012

-- the city was a site, announced in 2008, for the UK Cycling Cities demonstration program under the previous Labour Government (article)

-- and next year Bristol will be the designated European Green Capital, as part of that EU program

my favourite paving stonePaving stone in Bristol, UK.

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At 1:46 PM, Anonymous charlie said...

What is interesting is that the Jacobs reeal estate cycle (old office space goes cheap, attracts innovators) is pretty broken.

Does seem to work with artists, though. Perhaps the costs of real estate are not critical for other innovators.

At 2:55 PM, Blogger Richard Layman said...

I don't think it's right to say that the jacobs model is broken. 1. We see the application all the time. The Silicon Valley stuff in SF is another example...

2. However, it's not limited to what we think of as "historic buildings" or old big manufacturing plants or warehouses, just "old" paid off buildings.

Even strip shopping centers.

I'm coming to realize that it's bad intellectually/objectivity-wise/correctness/authoritativeness for me to be so hopped on on historic buildings per se (Jacobs wasn't).

E.g. the underused 1970s shopping center in Marl, Germany supports interest civic uses, just as shopping centers are being repurposed in the US.

3. Bue it doesn't stay cheap permmanently, necessarily, if demand for the area increases in substantive ways, and it becomes significantly repriced. E.g., Dumbo, Chelsea, Meatpacking District, Fashion District, etc.

thank you for the cite. Good article.


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