Brave New City

Cities are growing. This developing story comes with some dramatic statistics: today 82 percent of the U.S. population lives in urban areas, as compared to 67 percent in 1950, and a projected 90 percent for 2050, according to the Center for Sustainable Systems. It’s harder to find credible projections for disabled populations, since these figures tend to be broken down into categories like hearing, eyesight, and mobility challenges. Still, those numbers, along with aging populations, begin to add up to a significant portion of our neighbors who need special help. Metropolis asked seven teams of great design thinkers what they predict a fully accessible city might look like (and better yet, how it would function). What follows are imaginative, practical, funny, high-tech/low-tech, humanistic design solutions that make room for everyone and, in the process, invent new ways of making cities.



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