“Happy City”checklist

“Cities must be regarded as more than engines of wealth.  They must be viewed as systems that should be shaped to improve well-being” wrote Charles Montgomery in his book “Happy City“.  He also suggested the following checklist:

  • The city should strive to maximize joy and minimize hardship.
  • It should lead us toward health rather than sickness.
  • It should offer us real freedom to live, move, and build our lives we wish.
  • It should build resilience agains economic or environmental shocks.
  • It should be fair in the way it apportions space, services, mobility, joys, hardships, and costs.
  • Most of all, it should enable us to build and strengthen the bonds between friends, families, and strangers that give life meaning, bonds that represent the city’s greatest achievements and opportunity.
  • The city that acknowledges and celebrates our common fate, that opens doors to empathy and cooperation, will help us tackle the greatest challenges of this century.