Thursday, January 30, 2014

Retrofitting Suburbia



There are a few TED Talks that really stand out and deserve a second ( or third or fourth) viewing.
Ellen Dunham-Jones' Retrofitting Suburbia  is one of them.  I was thrilled to  meet Ellen and talk with her several months ago when she gave a lecture at Simon Fraser University in Surrey, BC.

One of the great tragedies of the 20th century has been what  the car culture has done to neighbourhoods and the sense of community that we all want and need as humans.
 We have  lost  those public squares, farmers markets, and cafes that contribute to a sense of community and what John Kunstler likes to refer to as " places people care about"  Places where neighbours see each other, get to know one another and chat with their local shop keepers. Places where we develop a sense of ownership. Places within walking distance from home. Places citizens care about.
 If home is your first place and work is your second place, the corner store or corner cafe or deli is known  as  your "third place"
 These TED Talks aren't  hour long lectures.  This one is short.  So grab a cup or coffee or glass of wine and watch this. It's worth it.