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Is Bangalore a city with a soul?

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 “Men did not love Rome because she was great. She was great because they had loved her”. He said “Love must be encrypted into the DNA of urban planning… and transmitted into the artifices, buildings, road systems and hardware, which then tells the people that this is a city that you can love, and one that loves you back.”

http://thegovmonitor.com/world_news/asia/singapore-releases-urban-redevelopment-authority-lifestyle-survey-29597.html

How much do we love Bangalore and how much does the city love us back?

"For the past few years, we (Singapore) have been working hard in terms of promoting architectural and urban design excellence and upgrading the hardware in both the city centre and in our heartlands, to make Singapore a more distinctive city. The survey results are showing a positive trend – that Singaporeans love their city more. during the “My Endearing Home” exhibition organised by the URA last year, I saw many Singaporeans penning down their thoughts on the photo wall, such as this one which says: “Singapore will always be my home”. In fact, some of these pictures shown on the screen are also taken by members of the public. There can be no better affirmation for the work that the URA and various agencies have done."

With so many fences and boundary walls even within the gated communities, can we call Bangalore as our home, beyond the four walls of the buildings that we may be staying in?

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silkboard's picture

searching for one

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Though comparison with (city state) Singapore is unfair, this still is a thought provoking post.

Love for city develops when residents connect with each other. Fences will stay, in fact more and more will get built, but you can get people to mingle when they leave those fences for the day, for work, recreation. The theme shifts to public spaces, like

  • Walking spaces - because everyone walks, whether for 2 minutes or 2 hours everyday
  • Civic Amenities - parks, museums, etc, invite you out.
  • Public Transport - forces you to mingle
  • Public Events that many in the city can identify with

The other angle would be that unless you connect with the city and its history, you can't feel much ownership about it. Local language is one way to connect, and sadly, ideas to promote this way of "connect" get lost in violent debates.

On public events, if you discount political rallies, not many come to your mind. That once in an year marathon may count. But still, no good 2-3 things per year with which majority of city can identify.

I have heard this phrase "Cosmopolitan Identity", which is more of an oxymoron. Bangalore is turning into a fancy dress party, those expecting uniforms would be disappointed :)

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