Redefining the Urban Landscape

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A new movement for grappling with dying cities has emerged in recent years. Instead of just coping with the wreckage of decline, it focuses on intentionally shrinking cityscapes. Flint, Michigan, the birthplace of General Motors, has seen its population shrink from 200,000 in 1965 to just 110,000 people. Now it's taking charge of the urban landscape before it falls into ruins. It's created a land bank that allows government officials to act quickly on abandoned properties and to turn some of the land over to Mother Nature. What lessons can be learned from Flint? Can urban decline be turned into a new kind of urban renewal? Instead of planned shrinkage, should cities be planning for new kinds of growth?




Sara Terry