How the Built Environment Can Help Build or Destroy Social Capital by @bloomingrock

Some cities in China are experiencing radical urbanization as more and more people move from the country to the city as the economy has shifted from agrarian to a manufacturing and technology. To cope with this population boom, and also to compete with the rest of the world, China has responded by building housing in glass and steel high-rises on the fringes of the city. And to handle the resulting commuting from these high-rises to the center of town for work, China keeps building freeways. Meanwhile, the human scale is completely lost. One of the problems with high-rises is that people on the upper floors won’t spontaneously go outside as much, just because going outside is not as easy as stepping out the front door. This leads to isolation and less interaction with people in the public realm. And when high-rises are the only response to housing, isolation becomes preval...

Full article: http://sustainablecitiescollective.com/node/261036

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