China’s Tianfu Ecological City will celebrate pedestrians | Oakland Ross | March 29, 2013 | Toronto Star

Designing a city simultaneously for the levels of pedestrians, cars and bikes reflects systems operating at multiple levels of scale.

In Tianfu Ecological City, feet will rule — along with the people who use them.

“It should be easier to be a pedestrian than a motorist,” says Kindel. “That’s the reverse of the thinking in Toronto or Chicago. The needs of the pedestrian have been neglected over the past 30 years in North America.”

True, Tianfu will include conventional urban streets but automobiles will have only a secondary presence, and they will not intersect physically with pedestrians.

Instead, the city will be constructed on multiple levels — one for cars and another for people on foot.

“There is a pedestrian network that will enable pedestrians to move about without coming in contact with cars,” Kindel explains. “It is not car-free, but it is designed as a pedestrian-oriented city.”

As for bikes, they are part of the plan, too, with dedicated, physically protected lanes on every street.

“The irony is, you won’t need a bike,” says Kindel. “You can ride your bike for recreation, but you won’t really need a bike to move around this city.”

The development is designed so that everything people might need — from public transit to green space, from schools to supermarkets — is located within a 10-minute walk, or about 800 metres, of where they live.

China’s Tianfu Ecological City will celebrate pedestrians | Oakland Ross | March 29, 2013 | Toronto Star at

The city had been reported earlier in Popular Science.

Chengdu Tianfu District Great City will connect via mass transit to Chengdu, a megalopolis of 14 million in southwest China. Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture says its planned city will use 48 percent less energy and 58 percent less water than a conventional city with the same population. It’s designed to be self-sustaining and environmentally conscious, using waste summer heat to provide winter heating. A power plant will use co-generation technology to provide both electricity and hot water.

Great City will cover just 1.3 square kilometers, or 0.5 square miles. This is about 245 football fields of space. That is not a ton of space for 80,000 people. And that’s the idea–everything is supposed to be so close that you can walk anywhere within 15 minutes. [….]

The high-density city is designed to be a prototype, which could conceivably be replicated anywhere else in the country. It’s supposed to start construction later this fall.

China Is Building A Brand New Green City From Scratch | Rebecca Boyle | October 25, 2012 | Popular Science at

Great City The entire city will be built from scratch on farmland near Chengdu, China. © Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture

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