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The Urbanist

With an influential audience of city mayors, urban planners and architects, this is Monocle’s guide to making better cities, be it new technology, state-of-the-art subways or compact apartments. Nominee in the Smartest Podcast category of the 2019 British Podcast awards.

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Latest episode

Making space:

How do you design and develop spaces for specific groups and activities? And how do these spaces affect the urban fabric of our cities? The use of public areas guides the way we connect with one another, so it’s important to get it right.

Latest episodes

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41817 Oct 2019
30 min

Making space: 

How do you design and develop spaces for specific groups and activities? And how do these spaces affect the urban fabric of our cities? The use of public areas guides the way we connect with one another, so it’s important to get it right.

DownloadPlay
14 Oct 2019
6 min

Tall Stories 178: Metelkova, Ljubljana: 

We visit a collection of buildings in the Slovenian capital with an intriguing history and an equally compelling present. Metelkova, once a military stronghold, now exists as a countercultural epicentre and, although it’s officially a squat, is actively supported by the mayor and city council.

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41710 Oct 2019
30 min

New-towns movement: 

Purpose planned and purpose built, the new-towns movement sought to let some air out of congested industrialised centres after the Second World War. But how have these towns fared and could a fresh wave of them be the cure to some of the 21st century’s urban ailments?

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7 Oct 2019
4 min

Tall Stories 177: Khlongs, Bangkok: 

We take to the water in Bangkok to explore the khlongs, a vast network of canals that crisscross the Southeast Asian city. Home to bustling commuters, tottering tourists and floating markets, these still-thriving waterways are the city’s ancient lifeblood.

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4163 Oct 2019
30 min

Resite 2019: Revisited: 

We’re back in Prague to zoom in on some of the big projects and bold ideas that emerged from Resite 2019. From the waterways of New York to the alleyways of Beijing, we we seek out the highlights from this year’s event.

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30 Sep 2019
4 min

Tall Stories 176: The Vessel, New York: 

We visit Thomas Heatherwick’s often lambasted Vessel, in New York’s Hudson Yards development, to see whether pointed prose or people power is a better judge of character when it comes to unusual structures.

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41526 Sep 2019
30 min

Resite 2019: Regenerate: 

We decamp to Prague to join the 1,000+ attendees at this year’s reSITE conference. Exploring the theme of regeneration, we bring you conversations and contemplations from some of the most interesting names in the urban-planning world.

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23 Sep 2019
5 min

Tall Stories 175: The Narkomfin building, Moscow: 

We’re off to Moscow to look at one of the best-known examples of Constructivist architecture: Moisei Ginzburg’s iconic Narkomfin building. Designed to embody the early-Soviet ideal of communal living but soon falling out of favour with the Kremlin, the building fell into disrepair until Ginzburg’s grandson Alexei led much-needed renovations in 2017.

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41419 Sep 2019
30 min

Heritage, part two: 

Cities are tasked with protecting their historic environments but how can they do this in a way that preserves the sites while keeping them accessible to the public?

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16 Sep 2019
4 min

Tall Stories 174: The Hassan II Mosque, Casablanca: 

We head to north Africa where we visit the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca. Completed in 1993 after six years of round-the-clock work, this hulking structure can house 25,000 worshippers. With some ambitious features to go along with its hefty price tag, the mosque is a symbol of postwar Morocco and the reign of Hassan II. Monocle 24’s Melkon Charchoglyan tells us more.

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41312 Sep 2019
30 min

Heritage, part one: 

As our cities grow, they face difficulties reconciling conservation and development. So how can we move forward while preserving the history of a place? This week we examine how heritage can be both a blessing and a curse for the urban environment.

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9 Sep 2019
6 min

Tall Stories 173: The Column of Justice, Florence: 

We’re off to Florence to admire a 16th-century monument in Piazza Santa Trinita. The Column of Justice, an 11-metre-tall granite column with a statue of Justice perched atop, has a particular positioning and peculiar history that tells us some truths about the relationship between art and the city.

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4125 Sep 2019
30 min

Cities in extremes: 

We cast our eyes towards a few of the world’s most extreme cities, from an isolated Australian outpost to the heights of the Valley of Mexico, to assess how their unique challenges have shaped their urban environments.

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2 Sep 2019
6 min

Tall Stories 172: Victoria Park, Hong Kong: 

Victoria Park, a tranquil green space in Hong Kong, has long been a place for recreation. But since June it has taken on a different role: the park’s large open area was ground zero for anti-government protests.

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41129 Aug 2019
30 min

Repurpose: 

Repurposing and renovation are crucial tools for implementing urban change. This week we look at the Battersea Power Station, hear about a new cultural hub, housed in a former clothes factory in Georgia and turn our gaze to Moscow too.

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