Kotkin's 'Opportunity Urbanism' unveiledThe Kotkin project I've been involved with for almost two years now finally got formally released to the public at a Greater Houston Partnership luncheon yesterday. The goal was to understand cities as engines of upward social and economic mobility, with specific case study focus on Houston. It's a big deal, because the framework represents Joel Kotkin's formal alternative model to Richard Florida's Creative Class (two of the big names in the urban policy debate). It's also meant to part of the "big picture" ideas and dialogue of urban policy, like smart growth and new urbanism. If Portland is the "poster child" city for smart growth, we want Houston to be the equivalent for opportunity urbanism.
I'll be posting much more on this in the near future, but I want to keep this one short so you'll spend most of your reading time at least browsing the really beautifully formatted report with some very interesting graphs and tables comparing different cities.
I may be obviously biased, but I also think it's well worth reading the whole thing. There is also a short executive summary at the front, and here is some other media coverage that can give some overview:
- Houston gets expert advice on what kind of city to be - Houston Chronicle
- KUHF/NPR story
- Houston Business Journal