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How "Arrival Cities" Are Shaping the Future

In his new book, Arrival City, Doug Saunder explores how cities can ease the planet's "final migration" by creating "arrival" neighborhoods that allow newcomers to make connections with each other, their home villages and especially their new cities.
September 27, 2010, 2pm PDT | Michael Dudley
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Saunders shows how one neighborhood in Toronto exemplifies how to make an Arrival City work: Thorncliffe Park may have a high poverty rate, but, much like slums in elsewhere in the world it is providing newcomers with the opportunity to earn livelihoods and enter the mainstream of their adopted countries.

"[Toronto's Thorncliffe Park] is a culture of transition – a culture both entrepreneurial and conservative that can be found on the edges of cities around the world, in the slums of Dhaka and Sao Paulo and in the migrant neighbourhoods on the outskirts of Paris and Amsterdam. The ex-villagers here have an amazingly consistent record of entering the middle-class, urban mainstream within a generation. They launch small shops and other businesses and send their children into postsecondary education.

The area's poverty is not a sign of failure: It means that Thorncliffe Park, like many such neighbourhoods, is functioning as a highly successful engine of economic and social integration, churning people out as fast as it takes them in, constantly renewing itself with fresh arrivals."

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Published on Saturday, September 25, 2010 in The Globe and Mail
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