How to Live in a City [1964]

We found today this documentary on the blog Open Source Cities. They describe it as “A quirky documentary on urban living and placemaking”. How to Live in a City [1964] was produced in cooperation with The University Council on Education for Public Responsibility. The Council, which operated from 1961 to 1975, funded a successful project on urbanism, examining the positive and negative aspects of the American city, resulting in a nationally televised series and a book of selected readings.

From the film’s current distributor:

Have you ever wondered what makes some cities better than others? In public access television pioneer George C. Stoney’s How to Live in a City, the argument is that it all depends on the quality of the public space.

New York City folk singer and architectural critic Eugene Ruskin guides us through unique locales which illustrate the fine line between organic and sterile urban spaces. It all depends on a place’s ability to attract and sustain, even if only momentarily, a sense of community.

And while some spaces succeed and others fail, one may wonder whether if it was designer’s intention to drive people away, or not.

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