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Building a Child Friendly City

Around the world cities struggle to build a safe, fun, kid-friendly environments.
March 6, 2018, 2pm PST | Casey Brazeal | @northandclark
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Dasha Rosato

Cities across the world must grapple with the issue of a more sedentary generation of kids. Tim Gill author of No Fear: Growing Up in a Risk Averse Society argues that building cities for cars and commerce is keeping cities from unlocking a better quality of life.

In a survey of strategies different cities have used to tackle the issues, Laura Laker highlights the Albanian city of Tirana, where the mayor built up support for closing a large section of city to cars by creating a series of children’ events that opened up the space to pedestrians. "Tirana also boasts a 'city council for kids', where young representatives meet the mayor, debate and take their findings back to school," Laker writes.

Lexington, Kentucky had success in reinvigorating its parks during the long, hot summers by adding a novel attraction. "The following summer a pop-up water fountain was installed on the grass of nearby Northeastern Park, and its impact was transformative," Laker writes. The additional attraction didn't just make the park more enjoyable to the people who generally used it, but was successful in attracting people who would not have previously used the park.

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Published on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 in The Guardian
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