The Future of the ‘Smart City’

The Takeaway, Public Radio International

John Hockenberry


In this 52-minute podcast, host John Hockenberry asks: “Is it smart to live in a city?”

Hudson Yards, on the west side of Manhattan, is poised to become the largest private development in U.S. history. A city within a city. By build out, it will see 125,000 residents and visitors a day. It is intentional, planned, and focused on digital connectivity.

Proponents believe it will change the way in which the environment is experienced, while others are hesitant. This show includes a recording of Jane Jacobs talking about “the vision thing,” as well as the opinions of others who fear the loss of spontaneity on the street. Adam Greenfield, author of Against the Smart City, doesn’t see quantification as a contributor to quality of urban life, while Roberta Brandes Gratz, author of The Living City  and We’re Still Here Ya Bastards: How the People of New Orleans Rebuilt Their City, warns against planners relying too much on data and not enough on people.

The program also looks at, Columbus, Ohio, winner of the U.S. Smart City Challenge.

You can listen to the podcast here:


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