Academic journal article British Journal of Canadian Studies

The World in a City/The Vancouver Achievement: Urban Planning and Design

Academic journal article British Journal of Canadian Studies

The World in a City/The Vancouver Achievement: Urban Planning and Design

Article excerpt

Paul Anisef and Michael Lanphier (eds), The World in a City (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2003) viii + 543 pp. Cloth £45.00. ISBN 0-8020-3560-4. Paper. £22.50. ISBN 0-8020-8436-2.

John Punter, The Vancouver Achievement: Urban Planning and Design (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2003), xxxi + 447 pp. Cloth ISBN 0-7748-0971-X.

Canada's cities face challenges of social integration, and of maintaining a comfortable built environment. The safety of neighbourhoods, affordable housing, and the potential for the development of community are amongst the common concerns of city dwellers. These two books illustrate how people in two of Canada's major cities have adapted to and shaped their environment. One provides an analysis of the social development of Toronto (edited by Paul Anisef and Michael Lanphier) while the other (written by John Punter) analyses the planning achievements of Vancouver.

Anisef and Lanphier's collection focuses upon the social integration of migrants in Toronto and its development as a multi-ethnic city. A summary of statistics of migration suggests that Toronto is amongst the most diverse in the world, with 42 per cent of its population being foreign-born (1996 data). The general conceptual orientation of this multidisciplinary collection is based on social exclusion in its broadest sense, thus including social citizenship as well as issues of community action. The first chapter, by Harold Troper sets the scene by outlining the background of migration that has changed Toronto from what is described as a 'predominantly British Protestant society' to its present multi-ethnic composition. The socio-demographic profile of Toronto is outlined by Clifford Jansen and Lawrence Lam, with an emphasis upon data from the census. Subsequent chapters cover housing and neighbourhoods, the economic situation of immigrants, schooling from the 1960s to the 1990s, health, and community politics. There is also a photographic essay that complements the social analysis. The final chapters raise policy issues and offer some reflective comments.

Overall, this is a substantial collection that demonstrates clearly the agency of people in constructing a city where, despite persistent social and economic inequalities, there are also clear signs of the positive effects of the 'energies so many individuals and organizations devote to forging diversity on equitable terms' (p. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.