The Conversation: How the metaverse could change the purpose and feel of cities

The Conversation: How the metaverse could change the purpose and feel of cities. “As more of our daily activities take place online, we believe it’s time to consider how this may eventually play out; if tomorrow’s city dwellers prefer the metaverse to brick-and-mortar stores and other urban amenities, what will it mean for cities and what purposes will cities ultimately serve? As professors in the departments of urban environment and digital culture we delve into this question and examine how the metaverse could profoundly change our relationships with urban spaces.”

Princeton University: What climate choices should cities make? A Princeton data tool helps planners set priorities.

Princeton University: What climate choices should cities make? A Princeton data tool helps planners set priorities.. “A new tool for city planners helps them design a portfolio of actions that encompasses compact development, smart electric mobility, electric heating systems, mass timber construction, urban reforestation, and technologies that allow resources to circulate efficiently through the food, waste and energy sectors.”

A Changing City: Chicago Department of Urban Renewal Photographs (Chicago Public Library)

Chicago Public Library: A Changing City: Chicago Department of Urban Renewal Photographs. “The nearly 16,000 images in this digital collection depict Chicago neighborhoods considered and targeted for improvement, including buildings and neighborhoods that were subsequently razed. The collection also includes images of events, including meetings, hearings, groundbreakings and public art installations related to various urban renewal and development projects.”

The Star (Malaysia): Singapore using ‘virtual twins’ of land and sea to monitor activities and plan projects

The Star (Malaysia): Singapore using ‘virtual twins’ of land and sea to monitor activities and plan projects. “GeoSpace-Sea stores and presents data from 11 government agencies, including national water agency PUB and the Housing Board. For example, if the National Parks Board (NParks) wants to study marine biodiversity, it can use the virtual twin to access marine life data, or the distribution of corals and sea grass. GeoSpace-Sea allows users to view and analyse the seabed with three-dimensional images as well.”

Newswise: NUS researchers develop AI-powered tool to map sustainable roofs globally

Newswise: NUS researchers develop AI-powered tool to map sustainable roofs globally. “Dr Filip Biljecki, Presidential Young Professor from the Department of Architecture at the National University of Singapore (NUS) School of Design and Environment, and NUS Master of Architecture graduate Mr Abraham Noah Wu developed an automated tool that uses satellite images to track how rooftops around the world adopt solar panels and/or vegetation. Known as Roofpedia, it uses a fully convolutional neural network (deep learning) which allows researchers and policymakers to study how cities worldwide are greening their rooftops and using them for photovoltaic installations.”

Cities after COVID: Resiliency is about embracing the crisis as part of a new brand story (Phys .org)

Phys .org: Cities after COVID: Resiliency is about embracing the crisis as part of a new brand story. “Cities as we know them are under attack thanks to COVID-19. Their growth, sustainability and ability to attract investment, tourism and talent are extremely vulnerable during times of crisis. In the last hundred years, cities have seen an increase in crises, pandemics and economic pressures—but not all are hit equally.”

EurekAlert: Stanford researchers develop new software for designing sustainable cities

EurekAlert: Stanford researchers develop new software for designing sustainable cities. “New technology could help cities around the world improve people’s lives while saving billions of dollars. The free, open-source software developed by the Stanford Natural Capital Project creates maps to visualize the links between nature and human wellbeing. City planners and developers can use the software to visualize where investments in nature, such as parks and marshlands, can maximize benefits to people, like protection from flooding and improved health.”

The Conversation: Why COVID-19 won’t kill cities

The Conversation: Why COVID-19 won’t kill cities. “Restaurants, small businesses and even big brand-name retail chains are closing in record numbers. Mass transit systems, like New York City’s, are warning of severe cuts in service if they don’t get aid soon as state and local tax revenue plunges. Many have fled to rural or suburban areas. And the situation appears likely to only worsen as America endures a ‘dark winter’ with no guarantee of more aid from Congress. Despite these challenges, two scholars who study cities explain why they think urban areas will endure – even if they don’t get the aid from Congress that now seems more likely.”

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: New Machine Learning Tool Tracks Urban Traffic Congestion

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: New Machine Learning Tool Tracks Urban Traffic Congestion. “Currently, publicly available traffic information at the street level is sparse and incomplete. Traffic engineers generally have relied on isolated traffic counts, collision statistics and speed data to determine roadway conditions. The new tool uses traffic datasets collected from UBER drivers and other publicly available traffic sensor data to map street-level traffic flow over time. It creates a big picture of city traffic using machine learning tools and the computing resources available at a national laboratory.”

Association of Bay Area Governments: Bay Area Energy Atlas Now Online!

Association of Bay Area Governments: Bay Area Energy Atlas Now Online!. “ABAG’s BayREN program has launched the Bay Area Energy Atlas. The tool, developed by the California Center for Sustainable Communities at UCLA, in partnership with BayREN, is a large database of PG&E account-level electricity and natural gas consumption linked spatially to building characteristics and sociodemographic data. The Energy Atlas was developed to assist local governments with climate action planning and to delve into how energy is being used in their jurisdictions. “

University of Amsterdam: Google Streetview shows social importance pedestrian friendly environment

University of Amsterdam: Google Streetview shows social importance pedestrian friendly environment. “With Google Streetview and Deep Learning, researchers at the University of Amsterdam and the University of Twente identified how the urban environment is linked to the vitality of social organisations and neighbourhoods. They conclude that, if an environment provides more space to pedestrians, this will be conducive to neighbourhood-based social organisations’ chances of survival.”

WBEZ: COVID-19 Is Changing The Way Some Planners Think About How To Design And Develop Cities

WBEZ: COVID-19 Is Changing The Way Some Planners Think About How To Design And Develop Cities. “Cities around the world want to reimagine how businesses rebound amid economic devastation and find a way for society to go car-free. Urbanism in the time of coronavirus is a hot Twitter topic among urbanists. For others, the elite nature of who cities serve could change with the pandemic, opening up conversations around equity, say some experts.”

Intelligent Transport: ITDP reveals new tools to improve transit inclusivity and city walkability

Intelligent Transport: ITDP reveals new tools to improve transit inclusivity and city walkability. “The Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP) has revealed Pedestrians First – a guide and set of online tools to aid urban planners and city officials in assessing inclusivity of their cities’ transit systems as well as the walkability of their neighbourhoods and streets. The guide includes walkability data for nearly 1,000 metropolitan areas around the world, which users can explore in an interactive map. ITDP says this is the first-ever worldwide analysis to measure walkability in cities globally.”