Look to China to Glimpse the Future of Cities

The era of American cities such as Chicago and New York leading the way in urban innovation went out with the close of the 20th century, says Dustin Roasa. Its China's turn to show the world what the city of the future will look like.

Although his colleague at Foreign Policy, Peter Calthorpe, cautions against China's urban future mirroring America's sprawling past, Roasa sees China as the world's new leader in urban technology. Exploring ideas that run the gamut from pie-in-the-sky to already implemented, Roasa looks at examples of urban innovations such as modular skyscrapers, traffic-jumping buses, and cutting-edge recycling. 

One area in which the Chinese are already aggressive is the expansion the country's share of electric vehicles:

"Hoping to become the global leader in electric vehicles, the Chinese government wants 500,000 electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles on China's roads by 2015, and more than 5 million by 2020. It is already backing these aspirations with a range of subsidies, including up to $8,800 for every electric vehicle purchased by taxi companies and local governments."

"As a result, China has more electric taxis in operation than anywhere in the world and is likely to extend its lead."


Full Story: Cities of the Future: Made in China


building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.

Prepare for the AICP* Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245
City Plate table setting

New Arrival! City Plates

City downtown cores printed on gorgeous decorative collectible porcelain plates.
Book cover of Unsprawl

Unsprawl: Remixing Spaces as Places

Explore visionary, controversial and ultimately successful strategies for building people-centered places.
Starting at $12.95