55

July / August 2012

Issue 55 presents the Quality of Life Survey. We bring you 25 places to call home, 11 urban visionaries, 50 things to improve your life, five cities you'll be hearing more about and one perfect street – as imagined by Monocle.

Issue 55 cover
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Mapping progress

As the world changes, so do our top 25 cities. A tour of the globe’s urban hotspots and cultural corners helps fill in the picture.

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Little shop of wonders

In a world of bland city centres, a shop full of interesting and unusual magazines and music that’s staffed by experts is a joyful discovery. And what’s more, they make your neighbourhood special.

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Expo 55: Naha

Despite an unsettled history and political identity, due to its location at the point where Japan faces China under the watchful eyes of the US military, Naha seems healthy, happy and relaxed, and a long way from Japan’s…

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Living for the city

Great cities adapt and change like their residents. The process of finding a favourite has been a global undertaking that confirmed and renewed our love of exciting urban centres. The following make up Monocle’s top 25.

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Telly Cities

No matter how much money and effort is put into marketing your city, if you want tourists to visit and everyone to know its name, nothing compares to having a popular TV series being filmed in your city. Monocle looks at…

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Expo 55: Valparaiso

After spending the late 20th century becalmed in quiet isolation, Chile’s second city is opening up to the rest of the world. But will World Heritage status, tourism and redevelopment corrupt the port’s cheerful bohemian…

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Meet the new boss

Local governors often face different challenges to their national counterparts. Smaller budgets can mean fewer choices. But thinking differently can achieve big results, as our selection of inspiring local legislators…

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The water works

Throughout the five boroughs of New York, space is at a premium. For the city’s planners, that means making intelligent use of existing waterfronts and parks to showcase that famous skyline from a fresh perspective.

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Expo 55: Portland

The stern influence of the North Atlantic may make Maine’s largest settlement misty and cold for much of the year but that doesn’t prevent the warm, relaxed lifestyle of Portland’s inhabitants from being extremely infect…

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Europe Briefing

High-speed rail lines are in the pipeline for both the UK and Turkey, while a breath of fresh air is promised in the planned landscaped gardens of the redeveloped Le Forum des Halles, Paris.

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In focus

The story of better urban living and sensible design unfolds in its details, from the colours and textures to the lampposts and logos. Monocle’s editors and correspondents pooled their photo libraries and bring you some of…

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Observation

As the wall fills up with pages for the new issue and plans are made for the impending Country Fayre and the next Monocle Café, Midori House goes holiday happy at the approach of summer. Or it will if we can stop arguing…

Global

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Americas Briefing

New York's first bicycle sharing scheme is set to launch into action, a new escalator is improving the lives of Medellin's, Colombia, residents, and Peru invests in its solar energy sector.

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Path to happiness

An ode to those tucked-away streets of the world that seem to have their own poetry and swagger. Our design editor writes about the thoroughfares that have the capacity to touch the heart and soul.

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Life in the round

Standing out against a backdrop of drab, square tower blocks on the north bank of the Chicago River, the white “corncobs” of Bertrand Goldberg’s distinctive Marina City buildings are still inspiring, both inside and out.

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Follow this leader

Michael Bloomberg is currently serving his third term as mayor of New York. He’s not only admired by his constituents, he’s also famous the world over for the way he cleaned up the Big Apple. He tells Monocle how his ideas…

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Monocle Strasse

The best streets evolve over time with an odd assortment of places and people. That’s why our perfect street contains a mixture of old and new from our favourite city haunts around the world.

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Asia briefing

Work on a new motorway to drastically improve the Phillipines' infrastructure gets underway, tree planting takes off in China to combat desertification and Kabul to educate the population on conservation, while India's…

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Fashion briefing

Anne Valerie Hash's feminine take on the classic suit, taking into account the experience she gained working at Chanel and Chloé previously, Central St Martins graduate J.JS Lee's boyish cuts, and summer in shoe in the form…

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By the lake

We take in some sunshine, swimming and laid-back living in the picture-perfect Swiss city of Lugano. We also keep our eyes out for a handsome villa in the hills.

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Oceania Briefing

The rebranding benefits of geographical name changes are weighed up in South Australia, plans to harvest storm water for consumption are questioned in the New South Wales city of Orange, and Tokelau announces plans to…

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