What is a true District for people? Why is it important? Why should we care about the creative class?

It’s the Friday before a long weekend. So today is video day. Enjoy!

What follows are videos that answer the questions in the subhead above. The answers to each are relevant to the future of the Tannery as a District.

In a broadcast yesterday, Mayor Zehr said that there were two separate questions. I agree that one question is whether the smaller Lang Tannery buildings should be demolished or if they are a part of our built heritage. But I don’t agree that the second question is about what would replace them. The biggest question in my mind is: Does Kitchener want a pedestrian-friendly people place that creates street life and helps us to attract and retain the creative class? If the answer is yes, we must keep the buildings and use them to create that space because neither a parking lot nor a mixed use building will.

The Distillery District is a people place

Looking for something to do this long weekend? Check out Toronto’s vibrant Distillery District created out of a former Victorian era industrial complex in the city’s east end. Here’s how to get there.

If you can’t make it, watch these videos to get a better sense of what I mean when I call it a true people place and suggest it as a successful model for the Tannery District—open spaces and all.



Jane Jacobs: Neighborhoods in Action

Part of what got me energized about the Tannery District was a Jane’s Walk of Kitchener’s Warehouse District. This video features an interview with Jane Jacobs in whose memory the walks take place and her perspectives on what makes neighbourhoods work and how to create places for people.

Richard Florida on Attracting the Creative Class

Richard Florida’s keynote presentation at Creative Places + Spaces. The Professor of Business and Creativity at the University of Torontos Rotman School of Management discusses the collaborative city in relation to the global shifts in our work, our values and our communities that are shaping the economies of the 21st century.

Creative Places + Spaces: What We Learned

In October 2009 delegates from across Canada and beyond joined Artscape in Toronto for our third Creative Places + Spaces: The Collaborative City conference. In a packed two-day program inspirational keynote speakers and ground breaking projects made the case for the power of collaboration to solve complex multi dimensional challenges and to fuel innovation. This video is a summary of what was learned.

Have a great long weekend!

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