In Asbury Park we have heard, “Asbury Park is unique” and, “we’re not (fill in name of any liveable, walkable, bikeable city), and “where will the delivery trucks park?”, with the implication that motor vehicles rule, and that walking and biking infrastructure won’t work here. Our Transportation Manager, Mike Manzella recently returned from a visit to Oslo, and other people-centered cities and we can’t wait to learn all about it!
In this BBC The Compass Podcast you can substitute Asbury Park for Oslo. You’ll hear how that city is also expanding, and making a commitment to “reducing carbon use and emissions”, working to “avoid urban pitfalls that may lead to segregation and inequality. Some say it might be impossible. Asbury Park is among cities all over the globe working to enable people to be less car-dependent, and to prioritize people in urban planning.
In the article below, you will read that Nordic planners have “prioritised liveability, sustainability, mobility and citizens’ empowerment”, and now there’s an international masters program to teach planners all over the world how to do the same. We have serious work to do in the US.
Oslo is “doing a a rigorous investigation into the city’s plans to grow quickly, but intelligently. They scrutinise the policies aimed at reducing fossil fuel emissions and creating a zero-carbon infrastructure, they look at the plans for preventing segregated neighbourhoods… ” Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Let’s get to work.
What the Nordic nations can teach us about liveable cities
Fuelled by rising international interest in why the Nordic countries are doing so well, three of the region’s top universities recently joined forces to launch the world’s first international master’s programme specialising in Nordic urban planning.
“In the Nordics, there has long been an emphasis on people in urban life, and putting them at the centre,” explains David Pinder, a professor of urban studies at Roskilde University in Denmark. Planners have prioritised liveability, sustainability, mobility and citizens’ empowerment – ideals manifest in green parks, well-lit public spaces, strong transport networks and accessible local facilities for children and the elderly.”
Read about it~