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Recommended Urban Planning books

The author has spent his life understanding what makes communities thrive. And he boils it down to “walkability”. Healthy is one of THRIVE’s core values and healthy outdoor activity has never been more important than it is right now with Covid. This book clearly outlines the “ten steps of walkability” and the great majority of them clearly apply to Amherstburg.

A book full of strategies and ideas for any community where people want to connect with their neighbours; where they can walk and children can play, without fear of cars. Where one can call its town, with pride and satisfaction – “home”. The author will be one of THRIVE’s future speakers so this is an excellent book to start with.

“Happiness” we all want to be happy don’t we? Focus on the positive, the joyful and not the negative. This book details how community design can transform our lives for the better. The author shares his insights from years of experience, psychology, and his own experiments on how to successfully achieve happiness.

When one talks about exciting ideas from Copenhagen, or New York city some people respond by saying those are very large cities – we are small Amherstburg! And of course a small community of 22,000 is a lot different than a city of millions. But their actions can definitely help educate us and many of them can be scaled down to fit our community. However, ideas are often not enough. Towns like Amherstburg need advocates, communicators, doers and sometimes “street fighters” to make things happen. This is the story of a woman that was instrumental removing cars from Time Square and making it an pedestrian plaza. If NYC could do that then surely Amherstburg can pull off some audacious initiatives to make it an even better town too.

Worried about having the time to read hundreds of pages on urban best practices? Then this might be the book for you. Nothing complex about this read – just 101 thought provoking ideas on how to make a better community. Each idea only covers two pages and one of those two pages contains a small sketch. Reading this book will not only surprise you re how much you learn, but you will undoubtedly see many ideas that we should make happen in Amherstburg.

Eg. #45 Some trees are more urban than others
Eg. #71 Make streets high friction (you will need to read the book to understand this one)

I know you probably think the Dummies’ books are only for people who can’t be bothered doing their homework. Or maybe you would not be caught dead reading one at Downtown Expresso Cafe because people might think less of you. Well not this “Dummies” book. It has a number of excellent chapters. Eg:
#8 The City Beautiful.
#11 Greening of the City.
#17 Getting People Involved.

Climate change and the action we need to take to prevent it is woven through all the initiatives THRIVE will be working on. It is the greatest threat to our planet and we cannot assume someone else will save us. Amherstburg has to do it’s part. This book helps you learn the science and find your climate voice. THRIVE will be hosting speakers on climate change. This book will help you engage with them.