Culture, Chords & Community

July 8, 2019 in Art & Culture

What values do people hold at folk, roots and blues festivals across Canada? How do these values relate to our communities and cities?

In this episode, Gillian and I talk about where she grew up, her undergraduate thesis that took her to music festivals from Vancouver Island to Newfoundland and how cultural elements of community, intention, and value are conducted at different music festivals across the country.


The Laws of Settlements

June 24, 2019 in Design, History

From a small Nova Scotia town to booming Barcelona to the mega-city of Jakarta, are there any laws that govern all human settlements? Are there consistent patterns that manage where people live, across scale and time? 

Back in the sixties, an architect and planner named Constantinos Doxiadis explored this question. He sought to understand the complexity and growth of human settlements. In his 1968 book called Ekistics: An Introduction to the Science of Human Settlements, Doxiadisspent 527 pages proposing a science of settlements. 

Today I am talking with Erick Villagomez, an urban designer, professor and writer in Vancouver who has revived and expanded on some elements of Doxiadis’ work. In 2017, Erick self-published a book called The Laws of Settlements. 


Child Scale Cities

May 27, 2019 in Design

One of the trademark elements of cities is their diversity – of spaces, or activities and of people. Yet, when we consider how our cities get built, that diversity can often be forgotten. I’m a middle aged, able bodied, Caucasian male. Cities generally work pretty well for me. But what if you have a visual impairment? What if you are female? Or what if you are a child? We have explored some of the implications of considering diversity in our cities in previous episodes and will continue to do so in the future, but today, I wanted to talk to someone who is examining urban places from the perspective of children. John talks with Vivian Doumpa, who is examining urban places from the perspective of children.