Blog Prompt #1
When asked to investigate the ideas of energy, flow, and transformation through a city I immediately began thinking about the city I knew best, Milwaukee. I starting thinking about milwaukee as I would travel through it and think about the experience. I feel milwaukee has good and bad examples of urban planning and examples of energy,flow, and transformation. I think for a city to have good flow and energy there needs to be numerous green spaces through out the city. In the case of milwaukee, the largest park is set right on the east side on lake michigan and it is known as Veteran's Park.
Green space inside of cities adds to the flow and energy of the landscape because it gives people a place to congregate and bring nature into the urban world. I think having an abundance of trees and parks in a highly urbanized area is very important because of its beneficial qualities to the people and keeping the environment healthy. An interesting idea is the topic of a green ban around a city. Having a few miles wide of forrest surrounding a city can have a great impact on the pollution that sits above highly urbanized areas. Some cities in Europe are experimenting with this idea.
Next aspect of energy in cities is support of the arts. Having museums, works of art, performance art centers, and other events inside cities give energy and character to a city. They create energy in the city because people get out of there homes or work places and experience their city. Some of my favorite places in milwaukee deal with support of the arts and history such as...
The Milwaukee art museum by Santiago Calatrava
The Milwaukee Orhcestra Theatre
The historic Pabst theater
The milwaukee public museum
and my personal favorite, the Summerfest grounds
All these places are fixtres in the downtown milwaukee area and are considered landmarks. They give people comfort in knowing they are there for them and create flow and energy throughout the city because they are special and not just office buildings. Public spaces, I feel are important to creating a city with energy.
Lastly, Milwaukee has some good examples of transformation. In what is known as the Third Ward. It lies right on the milwaukee river on the west side and was originally developed as a port off the river. This area of milwaukee was one of the original areas of development and other than use as a port, there were many irish neighborhoods.
It then began getting wore down significantly with industry in the 1950's and 1960's and recently great stride have been taken in transformation. The Third ward has been transformed into a modern area that is the most highly desired in downtown milwaukee for living.
I think transformation give people a renewed sense in pride in areas of there city. When people can find pride in there town, they will continue to make it better.