This week’s Urbanist Goodreads are a dig on Seattle

This week we learn how Pittsburgh used the arts to revitalize downtown, see how dirty Beijing’s air has become, mock Seattle’s decision to build a tunnel, explore The Tower of David, a skyscraper slum in the heart of Caracas, and watch 25,000 candy oranges bounce down a steep hill. How the Arts Drove Pittsburgh’s Revitalization – The Atlantic “Pittsburgh is not unique, of course, in looking to the arts as an economic catalyst for revitalizing a downtown and improving an urban area’s quality of life. Cities across the country, small and large, realize that a vibrant arts scene can attract people downtown and spur the opening of restaurants and other supportive amenities… But Pittsburgh’s is widely regarded as the most impressive and successful such effort, respected for its sensible, clearheaded approach based on preservation.” Starting in the mid eighties a conglomeration of Pittsburgh’s foundations focused on transforming it’s dilapidated downtown into a cultural destination. This is how they succeeded. What can other cities who were once know for manufacturing and industry learn from Pittsburgh’s success? Inside Beijing’s airpocalypse – a city made ‘almost uninhabitable’ by pollution – The Guardian “The day I arrive in Beijing, the AQI hits 460, just 40 points away from maximum doom. It’s the kind of air that seems to have a thickness to it, like the dense fug in an airport smokers’ cubicle. It sticks in the back of your throat, and if you blow your nose at the end of the day, it comes out black. Pedalling around the city (I am one of the only cyclists mad enough to be on the…