The big idea: should cars be banned from cities? | Cities | The Guardian
Streets have been optimised for one thing: traffic. A kind of ‘urban rewilding’ could return them to the complex social ecosystems they once were
Like natural ecosystems, cities also used to be complex and diverse places that hosted a whole range of different activities. Our streets were public spaces, used for many purposes: work, trade, play, socialising and transportation.
Rebecca Solnit describes our relationship to our city streets perfectly in her book Wanderlust:
“The word citizen has to do with cities, and the ideal city is organised around citizenship – around participation in public life.” And that is how it once was.
Thalia Verkade and Marco te Brömmelstroet are the authors of Movement:
How to Take Back Our Streets and Transform Our Lives (Scribe), translated by Fiona Graham.
Wanderlust by Rebecca Solnit (Granta, £9.99)
Fighting Traffic: The Dawn of the Motor Age in the American City by Peter D. Norton (MIT, £25)
Earthopolis: A Biography of Our Urban Planet by Carl H. Nightingale (CUP, £25)