What are cities made of?
00:00 / 00:00
25 November 2021
From concrete to timber and glass to steel, there are many facets that make up a city – but are all of them as obvious as they sound? This week we discuss the very action of city-building from the physical to the intangible.
25 November 2021
After water and air, sand is the natural resource the world consumes the most of, and it’s used for a variety of construction purposes. But getting it isn’t as easy as you might think and we are running out of it too.
Share chapter 1
Circular construction is all about trying to make the best use of the built environment, using existing buildings as intensively as possible. We hear from Andrea Charlson, the built environment lead at Circuit.
Share chapter 2
Data is perhaps one of the most important facets that make up the fabric of our built environment. Aruj Haider is the chief digital and innovation officer at Westminster City Council and is working to better utilise data and bring communities together through smart innovation.
Share chapter 3
Want more radio episodes like these in your inbox?
Sign up to Monocle’s email newsletters to stay on top of news and opinion, plus the latest from the magazine, radio, film and shop.
The Urbanist - latest episodes
Monocle’s Olga Tokariuk returns to Kyiv to assess the current state of day-to-day life after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
We report from the international horticultural show that takes place in the Netherlands every 10 years. Once it wraps up, the 60-hectare site will be adapted to become a fully functioning new part of the city of Almere.
David Stevens heads to the Catalan capital of Barcelona to visit a historic building that offers a fresh perspective on one of its long-hidden façades.
We’re in Brussels reporting from the Urban Land Institute’s Europe Conference and Young Leaders Forum to explore the emerging trends for cities and what comes next.
Samson Mbogo visits Kenya’s Fort Jesus, a Unesco heritage site that is both a major tourist attraction and a symbol of a much darker history.
We flick through a few city snapshots and discuss some stories that we have been following from around the globe.
Monocle’s Ivan Carvalho looks at a remarkable piece of architecture designed by Lina Bo Bardi, whose efforts to preserve an oil-drum factory in the middle of Brazil’s biggest city resulted in a refined design that meets the…
We look at the different ways in which cities are bringing innovative designs to their new housing stock to ensure that growing urban populations have a place that they can be proud to call home.
Geetanjali Krishna looks at the Red Fort in Delhi – and the claim to its ownership by a woman purporting to be the oldest surviving descendant of India’s last Mughal emperor.
What lessons can cities learn from the past? We discuss Leonardo da Vinci’s plans for the ideal city, sketched after a pandemic; revisit the pneumatic tube system; and re-examine the humble drinking fountain.
Emily Wither visits one of the world’s most stunning YMCA buildings to explore how the space has helped to bring together a divided city.
How Helsinki is creating more liveable spaces, the latest technology being rolled out by Kone and we visit an active mine 200 metres below ground, which is now used as a testing laboratory for high-rise buildings.
Hester Underhill visits a strange subterranean building in the French capital designed by Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer.
Climate change is the biggest threat to our cities. Helsinki has set the ambitious target to be carbon-neutral by 2030, a goal matched by global engineering firm KONE. Monocle 24’s Carlota Rebelo reports from Finland.
Ed Stocker examines Milan’s recent obsession with building renovations and the tax incentives behind it.