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26 Priceless Jane Jacobs Quotes

Jane Jacobs is an American-Canadian journalist and activist known for her influence on urban studies and renowned book, ‘The Death and Life of Great American Cities.’ Jacobs spent some time organizing grassroots efforts to overhaul neighborhoods and keep inner city communities together. Here is a look at some amazing Jane Jacobs quotes.

“A region is an area safely larger than the last one to whose problems we found no solution.”

“All through organized history, if you wanted prosperity you had to have cities. Cities are places that attract new people with new ideas.”

“Automobiles are often conveniently tagged as the villains responsible for the ills of cities and the disappointments and futilities of city planning.”

“Cities are an immense laboratory of trial and error, failure and success, in city building and city design.”

“Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.”

“Designing a dream city is easy; rebuilding a living one takes imagination.”

“Everyone is aware that tremendous numbers of people concentrate in city downtowns and that, if they did not, there would be no downtown to amount to anything–certainly not one with much downtown diversity.”

“I have learned yet again (this has been going on all my life) what folly it is to take any thing for granted without examining it skeptically.”

“Intricate minglings of different uses in cities are not a form of chaos. On the contrary, they represent a complex and highly developed form of order.”

“It is immoral for powerless people to accept this powerlessness. They may not succeed in getting power but they can fight for it, and if enough fight for it, it makes it very difficult for the people with the big sticks.”

“It is learned from the experience of having other people without ties of kinship or close friendship or formal responsibility to you take a modicum of responsibility for you.”

“Lowly, unpurposeful, and random as they appear, sidewalk contacts are the small change from which a city’s wealth of public life must grow.”

“People must take a modicum of public responsibility for each other even if they have no ties to each other.”

“Power is supposed to be so corrupt. I don’t think it’s so much corrupt, in the usual sense of the word, as stupid and unrealistic. The more power a person has, the further he gets from reality.”

“Redundancy is expensive but indispensable.”

“Streets and their sidewalks-the main public places of a city-are its most vital organs.”

“The ballet of the good city sidewalk never repeats itself from place to place, and in any one place is always replete with new improvisations.”

“The first fundamental of successful city life: People must take a modicum of responsibility for each other even if they have no ties to each other. This is a lesson no one learns by being told.”

“There is no logic that can be superimposed on the city; people make it, and it is to them, not buildings, that we must fit our plans.”

“This is something everyone knows: A well-used city street is apt to be a safe street. A deserted city street is apt to be unsafe.”

“This is what a city is, bits and pieces that supplement each other and support each other.”

“When we deal with cities we are dealing with life at its most complex and intense. Because this is so, there is a basic esthetic limitation on what can be done with cities: a city cannot be a work of art.”

“Whenever and wherever societies have flourished and prospered rather than stagnated and decayed, creative and workable cities have been at the core of the phenomenon.”

“While you are looking, you might as well also listen, linger and think about what you see.”

“Writing, printing, and the Internet give a false sense of security about the permanence of culture.”

“You can’t rely on bringing people downtown, you have to put them there.”

Here is a look into the nature of economies with Jane Jacobs.

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