Humanität – Cities as human habitats
The numbers frightened: in 1800, only 2% of the world’s population lived in cities. Today, they are already 54%. And by 2050, it will be 66%. Cities are humanity’s preferred place of living. Cities are today our habitat. Living in cities, of course, has become a dispute over spaces and resources. The movements of society, economic capital and technology are creating a completely new future, and in an accelerated way.
Degradation is advancing, and the preservation of the environment will be crucial. How can we combine a more integrated development with nature and how can we preserve our future?
Cities, in general, no longer offer the spaces of socializing and meeting. And it is in the public space where we meet, and learn to deal with differences.
Every day we see small values of cities, such as traditional knowledge, small trades, symbolic buildings, being relegated to a condition of unimportance. In these small things lies the soul of the city and the sensibility.
But people need to want development to follow a different path, redeeming values such as the conviviality, soul of the city, leisure, friends, walks, meetings.
We need to bring these variables into the discussion agenda. We need to realize that this is important and that the city contributes to us being happier! Is it not surprising that a subject that affects so much the lives of so many people is not seriously debated by people?
It is urgent to think of cities and development differently, creatively. At the current pace, with society having the same demands, the need for energy will double by 2040, with more than twenty times the number of devices connected to the electricity grid by 2020. In the industrial park, this index is just over 50%. In the day-to-day of cities, the situation also points to waste: 20% waste in traffic, 20% in distribution and energy and 50% in water distribution. How to deal with the huge volume of solid and organic waste? The infrastructure will have to be recreated – if it no longer meets the current demand, imagine if it can support the next 35 years! How to do different, rather than just repeat the same solutions that are no longer current? We must change our course.
All this is a reflection of an individualistic and little solidarity philosophy that forgets the importance of collective coexistence and community involvement. Conviviality must once again be the axis from which urban planning is defined, combating the loosening of social cohesion, isolation and urban solitude.
So we need to take better care of the habitats. Of the natural habitat of several species. And we also need to take care of the habitat of these animals that are us, humans. Let’s make cities more human by design.