184 pages, 45 illustrations
What would it mean to live in cities designed to foster feelings of connectedness to the ocean? As coastal cities begin planning for climate change and rising sea levels, author Timothy Beatley sees opportunities for rethinking the relationship between urban development and the ocean. Modern society is more dependent upon ocean resources than people are commonly aware of, from oil and gas extraction to wind energy, to the vast amounts of fish harvested globally, to medicinal compounds derived from sea creatures, and more. In Blue Urbanism, Beatley argues that, given all we've gained from the sea, city policies, plans, and daily urban life should acknowledge and support a healthy ocean environment. Blue Urbanism explores issues ranging from urban design and land use, to resource extraction and renewable energy, to educating urbanites about the wonders of marine life.
Beatley looks at how emerging practices like "community supported fisheries" and aquaponics can provide a sustainable alternative to industrial fishing practices. Other chapters delve into incentives for increasing use of wind and tidal energy as renewable options to oil and gas extraction that damages ocean life, and how the shipping industry is becoming more "green." Additionally, urban citizens, he explains, have many opportunities to interact meaningfully with the ocean, from beach cleanups to helping scientists gather data. Ultimately, he explains that we must create a culture of "ocean literacy" using a variety of approaches, from building design and art installations that draw inspiration from marine forms, to encouraging citizen volunteerism related to oceans, to city-sponsored research, and support for new laws that protect marine health.
Equal parts inspiration and practical advice for urban planners, ocean activists, and policymakers, Blue Urbanism offers a comprehensive look at the challenges and great potential for urban areas to integrate ocean health into their policy and planning goals.
" [...] Beatley expands his purview beyond the 'green urbanism' of Biophilic Cities to the vast oceans that make up 70 percent of the face of the Earth. While he still argues that cities must integrate green – really ecological design principles at all levels – into dense urban environments, he cautions that cities can't ignore oceans and marine environments."
- ASLA's The Dirt
"Blue Urbanism is suitable for all who are interested in and concerned about our Blue Planet, and a clarion call for effective engagement with shaping our future. Tim Beatley again offers us a promising vision of different and positive ways to address complex and neglected issues. Connecting the cities where most of us increasingly live with the watersheds and oceansheds that support humans and all that they cherish is vitally important."
- Margaret A. Davidson, Acting Director, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management
"Blue Urbanism is an inspiring book for citizens and policymakers alike, full of challenge and ideas. Connecting our cities' populations with the ocean, physically, intellectually and emotionally, is an urgent task for the twenty-first century. Tim Beatley brings examples of biodiversity, engineering, beauty and recreation together from around the world. City leadership must include the marine realm if humans are to be a healthy species on this Blue Planet."
- Celia Wade-Brown, Mayor of Wellington, New Zealand
"Tim Beatley provides a cogent argument for intertwining urban and natural worlds, especially for us on the continent's edge. As we add density, Beatley expertly argues that true sustainability must extend to the blue world that defines our globe and shapes our cities."
- John Rahaim, Planning Director, San Francisco
Preface: A New View of Cities on the Blue Planet
Chapter 1. The Urban-Ocean Connection
Chapter 2. The Reach of Cities, Urban Lifestyles and Ocean Health
Chapter 3. Satisfying Urban Fish Eaters Sustainably
Chapter 4. Blue Urbanist Design
Chapter 5. Reimagining Land Use and Parks in the Blue City
Chapter 6. Towards an Ocean Literacy
Chapter 7. Building New Connections between Oceans and Cities
Chapter 8. Forging a Blue Urban Future
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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-five years. He is the author of many books, including Biophilic Cities, Green Cities of Europe, and Native to Nowhere, all published by Island Press.