Three years ago, I met Judith Antkowiak in a Berlin coworking space in Berlin’s Prenzlauer Berg. Her character struck me, and the impression of a rather introverted person stuck with me. One evening, I was having what must have been a loud phone conversation in the open space. In Berlin fashion I was shouted at by Judith (although Judith is not from Berlin…), that others need to concentrate too and that I should be quieter next time. She always seemed busy and usually wore headphones on her ears. She must do something with music, I thought.
My love for the city of Montréal and my desire to settle down there in the coming years made me observe the real estate market. While researching some neighborhoods, it strokes me that some of them have been literally overrun due to a high demand for apartments and thus, any possibility to construct new buildings or to convert old industrial buildings into condominiums was taken. That’s quite an understandable process, as the demand for living space is great in the constantly growing metropolis of Montréal.
“C40 cities are leading the fight against climate change,” says Anne Hidalgo, Chair of C40 and Mayor of Paris. C40 Cities brings together nearly 100 of the world’s largest cities to pave meaningful climate action for a path to a healthier and more sustainable future. Representing more than 700 million people and a quarter of the world’s economy, the mayors of C40 cities are committed to realizing the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement at the city level and improving quality of life.
Creative industries and cultural tourism can become strategic assets for big cities. Globally, some of them are deliberately developing cultural zones. Examples include the Zorlu Center near Istanbul, Odaiba in Tokyo, West Kowloon Cultural District in Hong Kong, NDSM in Amsterdam and Stratford City Development in London.
Bilbao, in Spain’s Basque Country, is now an icon of culture-led urban regeneration, with the Guggenheim Museum. One of the most admired works of contemporary architecture, the building has been hailed as a “signal moment in the architectural culture”, because it represents “one of those rare moments when critics, academics, and the public were all completely united about something”, according to architectural critic Paul Goldberger.
Urbanization, coupled with the development of cultural activities, is also fueling the emergence of a new economic class in both developed and emerging countries — the “creative class.” This class, according to Richard Florida, urban study’s theorist, includes “super-creative” scientists, artists, engineers, designers and novelists, as well as “creative professionals” who work in a wide range of knowledge-based occupations.
The world is young – 1.8 billion of the world’s population was between 10 and 24 years old in 2014, a record high — and global literacy has improved significantly. Strong economic growth and young populations are already combining to produce a surge of middle-class consumers in many emerging markets.