Nicolas Magand on the internet

My name is Nicolas Magand and I live in Paris, France. I work as a social media and engagement editor at the Global Editors Network, a non-profit aimed at promoting innovation and sustainability in the news industry. Here I blog mostly about tech and media, but many other topics can face my enthusiasm.

Filtering by Tag: urbanism

Moving a whole city a few kilometres away in order to keep it alive

A fascinating story by Chris Michael, on the fate of the northern Swedish city of Kiruna, which is threatened by the collapse of the iron ore mines underneath it. By law, the mining company has to keep the city from being swallowed into the ground, since it is responsible for this unusual situation. In that case, it means moving the city a few kilometres away.

The scale of the project is unprecedented. Several dozen buildings will be moved by a specially assembled team of experts who have become so good at their jobs that Cars claims it’s now usually cheaper to move a home than to demolish and rebuild. The huge wooden church will be hoisted and moved; other buildings, such as the current city hall and the railway station, will be stripped of aesthetic elements, including lampposts and iron railings, to be incorporated into new structures.

Piece of cake.

Video of outer-Shanghai shows an infinity of buildings

Last week I came accross this video posted on Twitter by James O'Malley, showing what the outskirts of Shanghai looked like between two train stations. As O'Malley describes it:

If you've ever wondered how China has room for 1.3bn people… this is how.

You have to watch it to believe it, but is it both fascinating and kind of shocking. Shocking in the sense that I know we are only seeing the tip of an iceberg here, and the scale of this city landscape is just remarkable.

Improving traffic in New York City

Jason Kottke linked to a very interesting article on The New York Times, about how some European cities like Copenhagen and Amsterdam can insprire new traffic patterns designs. The author of this article, architect and urban designer John Massengale, has a few ideas for New York City:

  1. Decrease the number of Manhattan streets that function as transportation corridors primarily devoted to moving machines through the city.

  2. Design and build Slow Zones where people actually drive slowly.

  3. Make the transportation corridors that remain better urban places, with a better balance between city life and moving cars.

All great ideas, and I think Paris could really use one or two to improve the mess that is car traffic here.

There is surprinsigly no mention of the promises of autonomous cars: reduced number of cars on the roads in the long run, radically different traffic patterns, improved safety, etc. This article on Slate explains this very well.

There is also no mention of electric vehicles, and their undeniable positive impacts on air pollution and city noise.

Check also

Whenever I watch Columbo, as you should, I take some screenshots.

Making lists is something on which I love to waste time; my—ever-changing—favourite songs list was a real challenge.

On the great Letterboxd, I keep a log of the movies I watch, rate them, sometimes review them. 

If you speak French, I highly recommend my friend Nabil's podcast: Art Oriented.

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