In Defence of SkyCycle

Soaring above the city on a bike: you can’t deny it would be a cool way to get around. One of the greatest pleasures of urban transport is being the passenger in a car travelling along an elevated highway — being immersed in the city yet removed from it, revealing a perspective inaccessible to you […]

Talking About Cities Without Ground

Hong Kong isn’t an easy city to navigate. That’s because so much of it exists out of sight: above your head, under your feet, around the corner in a dingy shopping mall. It’s what architect Jonathan Solomon calls a three-dimensional city. “There are all these attempts to map Hong Kong, but most of them are […]

Posted in: Architecture, Asia Pacific, Books, History, Interior Space, Maps, Public Space, Society and Culture, Transportation by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Talking About Cities Without Ground , , , , ,

Walking in the City Without Ground

One of the first lessons of walking in Hong Kong: maps are your enemy. In a city with such dramatic topography, where private and public spaces blend together almost seamlessly, the best routes are not the most obvious. Take for example the 20-minute walk from the cafés of Star Street to the shops of Queen’s […]

Posted in: Architecture, Asia Pacific, Environment, Interior Space, Public Space by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Walking in the City Without Ground , , , , ,

The Underground City

If you live in Montreal, you’ll eventually be asked the question: “Which way is the underground city?” You will probably be walking along Ste. Catherine Street, the city’s main shopping artery, where H&M and Zara jostle for space with strip clubs and hot dog joints. Or maybe you will be making your way through the […]

A City Without Ground

It’s a bright Sunday afternoon and Central is buzzing. Thousands of Filipino domestic workers gather with friends for a weekly picnic. Shoppers stream through the luxury shops of Chater House to the somewhat less posh confines of Worldwide House, where large boxes of gifts are being packed for shipment to the Philippines. Charity workers stop […]

Footbridges

I dislike footbridges on principle, because they represent an abhorrent, machine-like view of the city: cars here, pedestrians there and never the twain shall meet. The city is reduced (like the Internet) to a series of tubes through which different modes of transportation travel as quickly and efficiently as possible. It’s soul-destroying. But in a […]