Ep. 38 The Making of a Happier City with Gil Peñalosa

Show Summary

Award-winning Canadian writer, Charles Montgomery, in his book titled Happy City wrote that “The latest wave of experiments in public space can be traced back to Bogota, and the moment when a quirky idea found its champion in an accidental city bureaucrat.” For today’s show, we tracked down that accidental bureaucrat by the name of Gil Peñalosa… and it took us all the way to Malaysia!

It’s life, music, talk – all grown up!

00:05:00 into the Show

Talk with special guest, Gil Peñalosa

Gil Peñalosa (Photo: 8 80 Cities)
Gil Peñalosa (Photo: 8 80 Cities)

Gil Peñalosa was instrumental in helping to change the conditional landscape of Bogota with his infusion of inclusionary events, interactive green spaces and recreational life – he has helped in part to change the perspective on how cities can positively influence people – if we work to incorporate the most vulnerable in its design. He now works out of an organization he founded based in Toronto called 8 80 Cities where he travels to places around the world to spread his message of possibilities.

Tune in as Gil Peñalosa shares on how to make cities not only happier – but healthier and more vibrant.

00:47:47 into the Show

Death and Life in City Parks

Jane Jacobs as chairperson of a Greenwich Village civic group at a 1961 press conference.
Jane Jacobs, Greenwich Village civic group, 1961.

In her book “The Death and Life of Great American CitiesJane Jacobs asks the question “Why are there so often no people where the parks are and no parks where the people are?” Tune in to weigh thoughts on what can turn parks into either danger zones or a coveted public space full of conviviality and positive human connection.



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