What Do the World's Most Romantic Cities Have in Common?
Kaid Benfield, Sustainable Cities and Smart Growth Director for the NRDC, answers this question in his annual Valentine's Day must-read post on the intersection of smart, sustainable urbanism, livable streets, and romance:
Prague. Venice. Rome. Paris. These are some destinations that perennially make "ten-most-romantic cities” lists. I just looked at three such sites, and all four cities were consensus picks. Vienna and Lisbon each made two of the lists.
What are some of the things they have in common?
- Strong sense of place anchored by historic preservation
- Lively, walkable, diverse downtowns
- Compact development patterns
- Extensive and well-used public transportation
- Great public spaces for lively human interaction
- Parks and quiet places mixed in with urbanity
- Great traditional neighborhoods with a strong sense of community
- Welcoming to people of diverse cultures
On this most romantic (or most Hallmark, at least) of days, it's interesting to note that we love—and fall in love in—cities that engender all the main elements of smart, sustainable urbanism.
Stepping Inside a World of Private Violence A new documentary probes domestic violence in America via the gut-wrenching story of one survivor seeking justice.
Building Foundations for a Stronger Future Dr. Franciamore was able to channel her education into a jumping off point to change her world.
Can Kickstarter Keep It Real? An interview with Yancey Strickler The co-founder of Kickstarter on progress, patronage, and potato salad.
The Organization Creating Starry-Eyed Future Scientists Universe Awareness introduces kids ages four to 10 to the wonder of the cosmos.
The Multicultural Power of the Stoner ComedyFans of Cheech & Chong and Harold & Kumar never have to ask “dude, where’s my diversity?”
Y U No Show Consequences? A meme review of the dramedy Men, Women, and Children Where do we start with Jason Reitman’s new film? Let’s discuss in the parlance of the internet: memes.
Everything You Need to Know About Cooking with Blood An interview with “blood lady,” Elisabeth Paul The Nordic Food Lab's innovative approaches to a culinarily neglected ingredient
American Women Are Finally Talking About Their Abortions
A new online community and a growing chorus of female politicians are de-stigmatizing the controversial choice.
Naming the Worst Thing Imaginable The documentary Watchers of the Sky forces viewers to confront genocide via the term’s dedicated, undaunted inventor.
6 Young Adult Protagonists Who Aren’t White
Teen fiction often relegates characters of color to the margins, if they appear at all. These books help broaden the spectrum.
Heads in the Clouds Take some time to channel your inner cloud-watcher and you just might discover something new, like these citizen scientists did