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Lessons for Urban Planning in 2016—From SimCity 2000

A tech writer had a chance to revisit SimCity 2000 after years away from the game for contemporary lessons in planning.
June 25, 2016, 9am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Neel V. Patel writes about lessons offered by a revisit to SimCity 2000, a source of obsession that launched many planning careers. According to Patel, the game feels "innocent" compared to the innovations and realizations that have taken place since the game was released. "SimCity 2000 arrived before the effects of climate change, before technology began to revolutionize city services, before the housing bubble popped, and before Uber," writes Patel.

Patel writes of the result of an experiment with two pre-made maps that task players with the effects of disaster scenarios. The first: flooding caused by rising sea levels in Charleston, South Carolina. The second, in typical SimCity style: an alien invasion of Atlanta.

Lessons taken from the experiment include the tendency of cities to rebuild with a goal of reliving former glory, rather than preparing for future needs.

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Published on Monday, June 13, 2016 in Inverse
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