Urban Planet is a daily roundup of blogs from around the world dealing specifically with urban environments. We’ll be on the lookout for websites outside the country that approach themes related to urban experiences and issues.
• University College London Geography professor James Cheshire has mapped the 15 most common surnames and their places of residence in London. Sunames are colour coded by their origin and scaled by their frequency.
• At The Economist, Andrew Oswald, Professor of Economics at the University of Warwick, and Richard Green, Director of USC Lusk Centre for Real Estate, debate whether home ownership offers a net benefit to society. Are homes wise investments or do they tie up capital that creative types might otherwise spend to develop a new business? Does ownership improve neighbourhood stability and civic engagement or does it interfere with the labour market?
• Partizaning, an urban art-based activist collective, has been conducting public workshops in Moscow’s sleeping districts to address livability concerns in these neighbourhoods. The sleeping districts are planned communities of mass housing blocks on the periphery of the city. The workshop series, titled”КООП: Cooperative Urbanism,” used a variety of creative research-based approaches to engage citizens (such as the tram stop turned checkerboard pictured above). (Polis)
• Italian artist Paolo Cirio is concerned about the privacy issues associated with Google Street View. To voice his concern, he’s launched Street Ghosts, a street art project where he prints images of people he finds in Street View, then pastes their likenesses in the precise spot where they were captured by the Street View car. (FastCo Design)
Image from Flowing Data