Tim Beatley has long been a leading advocate for the 'greening' of cities. But too often, he notes, urban greening efforts focus on everything except nature, emphasising such elements as public transport, renewable energy production, and energy efficient building systems. While these are important aspects of re-imagining urban living, they are not enough, says Beatley. We must remember that human beings have an innate need to connect with the natural world (the biophilia hypothesis). And any vision of a sustainable urban future must place its focus squarely on nature, on the presence, conservation, and celebration of the actual green features and natural life forms. A biophilic city is more than simply a biodiverse city, says Beatley. It is a place that learns from nature and emulates natural systems, incorporates natural forms and images into its buildings and cityscapes, and designs and plans in conjunction with nature. A biophilic city cherishes the natural features that already exist but also works to restore and repair what has been lost or degraded.
In "Biophilic Cities Beatley" not only outlines the essential elements of a biophilic city, but provides examples and stories about cities that have successfully integrated biophilic elements - from the building to the regional level - around the world. From urban ecological networks and connected systems of urban green space, to green rooftops and green walls and sidewalk gardens, Beatley reviews the emerging practice of biophilic urban design and planning, and tells many compelling stories of individuals and groups working hard to transform cities from grey and lifeless to green and biodiverse.
"Because of his great vision, Tim Beatley is a hero to many of us. To paraphrase a famous quote, some people see cities as they are and ask why; Tim Beatley sees cities as they could be (filled with nature) and says why not?"--Richard Louv "author of "Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder" "
About the author
Timothy Beatley is Teresa Heinz Professor of Sustainable Communities in the Department of Urban and Environmental Planning, in the School of Architecture at the University of Virginia, where he has taught for more than twenty years. He is the author of many books, including Resilient Cities, Green Urbanism, and Green Urbanism Down Under, all published by Island Press.
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