The Toronto Star recently published a review of the book Happy City by Charles Montgomery. I haven't read it myself (I leave it to RTH Editor Ryan McGreal to do all the heavy lifting) but it certainly sounds snappy:
"According to one study, divorce rates spike 40 per cent when commutes exceed 45 minutes." (Who knew?)
"Many dispersal families are economically fragile, spending 40 per cent-plus of their income maintaining car(s)." (Sounds about right.)
Montgomery cites the usual unsustainable statistics associated with sprawl, and bemoans the lack of any political will to do anything about it. But he also gives us a happy twist.
"...cities are becoming 'happiness generators' via inventive urban design. Take Paris, whose Seine-side Pompidou Expressway morphs during the summer into a beach complete with palm streets. Or Copenhagen, whose garbage incinerator does double-duty as a ski hill."
And let's not forget Sundays in Bogotá, where cars are replaced on its grand aviendas - with cyclists!
Sounds like fun. Can you imagine the Lincoln Alexander Cross-County Trail? Or the Jolley Cut doing double duty as a Black Diamond...?
Sure, it might never happen in the Hammer, but as the reviewer notes, "Happy City is just an election away."
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