‘The only thing that trickles downward is the lives of people, not the wealth’.
So said Oriol Estela-Barnet the Director of PEMB Barcelona during my visit to Barcelona. In this, I was reminded of the work of the British Geographer, David Harvey – who wrote in the Limits to Capital that ‘The accumulation of capital and misery go hand in hand, concentrated in space.’
For 30 years, cities have ridden a wave of global economic buoyancy. This prompted a ‘good times’ urbanism which has worked for a few, but not the many – with inequality, poverty and misery now on the rise in many cities around the world. We need a new urban response. We need to build a more social city.