The World's Most Ambitious Urban Renewal Projects

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Posted: Wednesday, June 22, 2016 3:57 pm

Ambitious and inspiring urban renewal projects are taking place around the globe to promote a move towards sustainable living and sustainable cities. With the re-urbanization of a lot of big cities around the world, there is an added incentive for these communities to attract young professionals, their families and companies.

Pots Planters & More has compiled a list of five cities that are in the midst of inspiring projects of urban renewal and sustainable growth. The company turned these stories into an online visual piece of content that shows the stories behind each of these urban renewal projects. For every urban renewal project, they focused on the problems facing each community that the project was intended to solve, how the project specifically solved those problems, as well as why the project is unique. They also explore the economic impact of each project.

Let’s take a brief look at the five cities featured and the story behind each urban renewal project.

The Atlanta Beltline

The Atlanta Beltline is an urban renewal project in Atlanta that includes a large network of trails, walking paths, rail cars, and streetcars that all run along a retired railroad bed that encircles the metropolitan area.

What started as a Georgia Tech master’s thesis has become an awe inspiring network of green space and parks for the downtown Atlanta area. Looking at the map overview of the beltline, one can’t help but be impressed with the amount of green useable space that has been added. It also made good use of an area that had been primarily unused since the railway was retired. There are more than 33 miles of trail, 1,300 acres of parkland and $20 billion in economic development that are the direct result of the beltline.

China’s Guangzhou Bus Rapid Transit Network

This bus rapid transit network is a low-carbon, highly efficient public transit solution with a service model different from other transit networks as there are no interchanges or terminals.

The BRT is an effective, innovative alternative to traditional metro systems in a rapidly growing and polluted megacity. There are 850,000 average daily passengers which is nearly three times more than any other metro transit system in Asia. Despite the huge amount of extra passengers, they are able to operate more efficiently than other public transit systems and are very proactive about reducing their carbon footprint in the process.

Los Angeles River Revitalization

The Los Angeles River Revitalization project is a great example of an urban makeover that addresses previous mistakes made by the city.

In the 1930s Los Angeles was dealing with massive flooding issues and decided to cover the river with concrete, which created one of the most notorious examples of short-sighted urban planning in the history of the U.S. Finally just short of 100 years later, the city has hatched a plan to restore the river and add more than 240 revitalization projects along its banks, as well as 51 miles of bike paths and parks.

Brazil’s Curitiba Integrated Planning

While this innovation might not be as flashy as the others mentioned, it is certainly the most effective. This city is decades ahead of its peers and should be an example for any city to follow. With one-fifth of the city designated as protected green space and 52 acres of green space per capita, Curitiba is widely considered the most sustainable eco-friendly city on earth.

There’s nothing cutting edge or glamorous about their green initiatives, but the results are unmatched across the globe. Seventy percent of the trash in the city is recycled, 1,000-plus parks have been created, 80 percent of all city travel is via public transportation and there have been more than 1.5 million trees planted by residents.

Las Vegas Renewability Pledge

When you think of Las Vegas, the first thing that pops into your mind is probably not sustainable energy. The city has pledged to run on 100 percent renewable energy by 2017. Casino owners and city officials have collaborated with renewable energy providers to become a global leader in renewable energy, which is good considering how much energy they consume.

They will be the first city in the U.S. with 24-hour solar power generation capabilities, the number one state in the U.S. in both solar and geothermal energy, and will have invested more than $6 billion in renewable energy projects.

Pots, Planters & More is a provider of high-quality indoor and outdoor planters for use in restaurants, hotels, retail locations, office buildings, campuses, luxury landscapes and stately homes.

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