Urbanism is life

Urbanism is Interaction. Living things interact. The raison d' etre of cities is human commerce, commerce broadly defined—economic, social, civic, and cultural. Why do humans engage in commerce? For the rewards and satisfactions: employment, business, learning, creativity, stimulation, culture, politics, companionship.

Urbanism is Organization. We are organisms. Organic life is about ordered relationships, habits, and rules. When property owners, government agencies, businesses, and citizens agree on standards for development that sustain community life, the built landscape attracts people and people prosper.

Urbanism is Movement. We are animals and we are attracted to animated things; not the predictable movements of clock faces and freeway traffic, but the unpredictable movements of our fellow creatures. To be alive, a built landscape has to have intriguing, playful, spontaneous human movement, and places where that can be observed.

Urbanism is Color and Self-renewal. Living things are colorful. When things die, they lose their color. When places are replenished—buildings painted, surfaces washed, and landscaping tended—the spirit of hope and investment thrives.