Where We Live: Cities And The People Who Plan Them

What other cities can learn from post-katrina New Orleans

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Payton Chung
Where We Live: Urban Planning
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Where We Live: Urban Planning

The City of New Orleans has gone through several “city plans” – both before and since Hurricane Katrina. 

It’s up to urban planners to design safe, sustainable, and adaptive cities in an increasingly volatile world.  But these plans are often met with resistance by citizens and government officials alike – and sometimes with good reason.

The history of city planning is littered with grand schemes and visions that ignore hard realities – like the possibility of natural disaster, and the needs of residents, poor, middle-class and affluent alike.

Kristina Ford was New Orleans’ director of city planning from 1992-2000 and her book “The Trouble with City Planning,” questions whether the problem lies in the disconnect between the plans, and the people and environment they are actually building the city for. 

She joins us today on Where We Live – along with Joel Kotkin.  He’s long made the case for suburbs – now in a new issue of Foreign Policy magazine devoted to global mega cities, he writes about his plans to thin the “density” that’s at the core of new urban plans. Is decentralization the planning model of the future?