Spirit, concrete, creativity
These were just three words that came into my mind when I was thinking about “urban” and what the introductory post should be like. Yet, I am sure that you can also think of a thousand more words to describe our urban way of life.
I am in love with cities. Of course, with some I have had a longer and deeper affair, with others I fall in love every day, or even remotely. I think the way we live in our cities and the issues we deal with there are often a representation of similar aspects of our overall way of life. Think of the competition for public space – wider sidewalks at the expense of car traffic. Isn’t this the same competition that we face towards one another – some want to move slowly and to enjoy the view, others rush towards their goals with no consideration of what’s happening around them. There are countless similarities, which I won’t engage with now. However, cities are a barometer of our way of life. They often show the best and the worst of us. They enable us and they can bury us (they actually do).
Yet, they are also a place of wonder. An awe to the creativity of human spirit, an awe to history, an awe to engineering and to design. This is why we create lists of “must-see” places, this is why we have to take that photo. Each of us experiences the cities they visit in a different way. For me, they are often prompting deeper personal reflections, along with professional analysis of urban questions (yes, I research cities and this is why I can claim a certain professional point of view). Of course, some places I just enjoy without too much of a thought. As a result, every visit in a certain location is very inspiring for me. I will try to share that with you, but don’t expect long posts with all the top photos of the key locations. What I try to capture is the spirit of the city and not necessarily in a photo. I will try to tell those stories in words, so I imagine that the best I can do is to inspire you to visit a certain location or maybe compare to your experience. And, of course, the professional view will deal, in an accessible way, with some urban issues which I find important with which I hope to provoke you to reflect on some questions.