Second (and third!) – hand marketplaces offer some of the greenest shopping options available – especially in the run-up to frenzied winter holiday consumerism – but in developing countries, they are also an economic necessity for both buyers and vendors. In early October, the Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) closed down a popular souk in the Abdali […]
Qatar is spending billions of dollars to prepare for the 2022 World Cup and some of that money will be used to expand Al Dhakira, a coastal city just 37 miles outside of the capital Doha that has protected mangrove forests to the north and south.
An awe-inspiring sight, as one departs Abu Dhabi towards Saadiyat and Yas Islands, these pylons seems to disappear into the distant sea. But we are actually looking inland and they are delivering energy to, rather than from, the city center.
In a Middle Eastern city with paltry green space, residents gather to object to new development that will destroy one of their few public parks. Sound familiar? Spin the globe, but this time stop at Beirut in Lebanon.
The social protests currently sweeping through Turkey started with a dozen men and women who parked their tents in Gezi Park – one of the last remaining green spaces in central Istanbul – to protest a shopping mall development. One woman has died. (Update: We haven’t been able to confirm this with any major newspapers […]
It’s a fact that Disneyland fits inside Disney World’s parking lot. Now double up Disney World and you almost match the planned footprint of Dubaiworld. That’s unimaginable, and sure to haunt my dreams.
Until a recent urban renewal project that forced most residents out, the neighborhood of Tarlabaşı was home to a diverse array of Istanbul’s minority populations. In the early 20th century, Tarlabaşı’s winding streets and colorful buildings were home to many of the city’s Greek residents. After violence against the Greek population their mass emigration from […]
Dror Benshetrit designs a Net Zero artificial island off the coast of Turkey. The HavvAda artificial island was designed as an antidote to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s proposal to build a canal between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara. The project has scores of critics, who worry about the environmental and […]
A relief to the environment as Israel allots money to upgrade poorly services sewers in Arab towns. Last Wednesday, Israeli Energy and Water Resources Minister Uzi Landau announced the government is allocating NIS 355 million to improve the sewerage systems in Arab neighborhoods across Israel. In recent years, the neglected and dilapidated sewer infrastructures in […]
The district of Sulukule has been home to Istanbul’s Roma community since Byzantine times, but many of its residents were displaced to make way for a development project that started three years ago. Sulukule was declared a target area for “urban transformation” by the Turkish cabinet in 2006. Six years, four lawsuits, and many evictions […]
Turkey’s government argues that much of the land has already been illegally developed and sold, especially in the outskirts of major cities like Istanbul (pictured above). Two weeks ago, Turkish President Abdullah Gül approved a law that opened a parcel of land in Turkey formerly classified as forests — known as “2B” land — to […]
Brian argues that skyscrapers are not only “un-green,” but they could be a precursor to economic turmoil. The Empire State Building was completed in 1931, the same year E.Y. “Yip” Harburg wrote these lyrics: “Once I built a tower up to the sun, brick and rivet and lime. Once I built a tower, now its […]
Edgelands are the spaces outside of towns and cities that play host to a rough element. Largely considered no-man’s-land, they too deserve attention, Marion Shoard argues. Two poets respond to the call. The term edgelands was coined in 2003 by Marion Shoard. She wrote, “The expanses of no-man’s-land which have sprung up on the margins of […]
An architect in Beirut illustrates how a small splash of color can completely transform a concrete environment. But trust us, that is just the beginning of this city’s problems. I judge a country by its public transportation, and Sandra Rashini, an architect who held a magnifying glass over Lebanon’s colossal urban problem for Mashallah, will tell […]
Would mini-libraries at bus stops encourage residents of your city to use public transportation? Here’s a novel idea: create a system of mini-libaries at bus stops in order to encourage reading and green transportation. Think it could never happen? Think again. Two urban artists, one of whom graduated from Israel’s Technion Faculty of Architecture, submitted […]
Egypt is losing an estimated 11,736 hectres of agricultural land every year according to UN sources From food contaminated with human waste in Cairo due to water shortages to concerns that the country could be on the brink of famine, Egypt is facing its fair share of food problems. Now, there are reports that desertification […]
A greenie examines her soul at the foot of hundreds of Dubai towers. Dubai is nothing at all like Las Vegas. Though both are unlikely cities in waterless environs and full of people eager to divest visitors of both their souls and their money, that is where their likeness ends. As a tour leader for […]
Eskişehir, a center of industrial production in Turkey, is the country’s most sustainable city, according to a recent survey. When businesspeople from 29 different cities in Turkey were asked to rank their country’s provinces and cities in terms of sustainability, quality of life, social opportunities, and economic environment, the biggest cities in Turkey — Istanbul, […]
Chris Turner from MNN argues that Copenhagenization is the more humble, more widely applicable approach to making cities livable, but there’s something about Masdar he didn’t think to address We spotted an excellent article over on Mother Nature Network that analyzes the fundamental philosophical differences between the Copenhagen model and Masdar City. Touted as the […]
A leading Muslim group denies the Cairo municipality’s request to relocate graves in the crowded city. Following the success of Al-Azhar park in Cairo, also known as the city’s lungs, the municipality looked to cemeteries as possible venues to develop more community parks in Egypt’s crowded capital. But Dar Al-Ifta, the research institute tasked with […]
The campaign to stop the destruction of 2,200 trees in Jordan’s Ajloun forest gathers pace as the government states it now will assess the environmental impact of the proposed development project In response to the demands of the ‘Halt Ajloun Deforestation’ campaign, the Jordanian government announced it will now carry out an assessment of the […]
As the most iconic structure of Islam, the cuboid Ka’bah in Mecca is one of striking simplicity. Covered in black material it’s a bold yet uncomplicated structure, with bare walls and a simple interior consisting of lamps and three supporting arches. Over time, however, this simplicity has been undermined by the proliferation of luxury hotels, […]
For the first time, the Gulf Kingdom of Bahrain is participating at the La Biennale International Architecture Exhibition in Venice. But theirs is an unusual approach. In accord with this year’s theme – to experience rather than merely observe architecture – Bahrain’s National Pavilion comprises a multidimensional, sensory depiction of an earlier, more integrated, and […]