Sustainable Innovation in Urban Planning: Jaime Lerner’s Visionary Success

Kicking off a North American book tour for his new publication, Urban Acupuncture: Celebrating Pinpricks of Change That Enrich City Life, Jaime Lerner recently spoke at the Museum of the City of New York, joined by former NYC Department of Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, Hon. AIANY and journalist and urban critic Roberta Brandes Gratz. Released by Island Press, a nonprofit organization with a focus on issues in the environmental field, Urban Acupuncture is a smart, quick read that urges urban residents to take a closer look at their everyday surroundings and find small but significant ways to improve the urban landscape, “a pinprick that provides a new energy in the process of planning, said Lerner.”

Referencing a subject discussed earlier that morning on WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Show, Lerner began his monologue by highlighting bits of recent urban acupuncture he thought made an impact in New York City: the High Line, which has influenced his ideas for plans in São Paulo, and the new bike lanes complemented by the arrival of Citi Bikes, which have transformed both the individual and public realms of transportation. He believes another pinprick lies in the revamping of the city’s ferries and urges us not to be afraid of using water as a means of everyday transport, citing the vaporetto used in Venice as an example of a popular waterbus. One could imagine how much less congested the L train would be if only there was a ferry running from Williamsburg to the East Village, not to mention how much better it would be to start a workday with a view down the river! Continue reading “Sustainable Innovation in Urban Planning: Jaime Lerner’s Visionary Success”