Your monthly roundup of news, tools, and events from the world of 8 80 Cities.

From the 8 80 Blog: 8 New Year’s Resolutions that Cities Should Make For 2018

It's still time to work on your year resolutions.While we’re not in the position to set personal goals for you, we do want to challenge you as city builders to rethink our priorities to ensure we are, indeed, creating cities for all. So, let us be your motivational coach of civic affairs and suggest these 8 new year’s resolutions for 2018!  

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It Takes a Village to Raise an Outdoor-Loving Child

Linda McGurk is from Sweden; a country with a rich culture of outdoor play. She starts this article by stating: ”In Scandinavia, nature is an essential part of childhood (…) kids play outside everyday regardless of weather”. But then McGurk moved to North America – and she realized that this is not accepted practice all over the world.
McGurk’s article showcases how Sweden places the concept of ‘open-air-living’ as a priority in children’s lives – and how Swedish children fair better because of it.

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24 Hours (of Envy) in Rotterdam
When it comes to urban cycling and quality of life, the Netherlands is way ahead of the pack. Rotterdam, for example, has traffic lights that prioritize pedestrians, bicycle-parking facilities that rival the world’s fanciest car parks, and it was responsible for introducing DIY bike repair stations on city streets. There is more to be jealous of …Check out StreetFilms short video and see everything the city of Rotterdam is getting right. 
The Nature Fix 
What happens when you go out and spend just 5 minutes in nature?

According to Florence Williams’ video, lots of good things happen. Not only is this video packed with fun facts, it is also beautifully crafted. Plus, it is short and to the point. Want to know more about the topic? Check out Williams’ book: ‘The Nature Fix’.

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Urban Design Cheatsheet

What does it take to produce good urban design? ‘Understand the invisible forces that shape a city; don’t just measure physical characteristics’. ‘Remember, bulldozers and cranes aren’t always needed; small can be powerful’.

These paraphrased statements are some of the insights Henriette Vamberg  (from Gehl Architects) shared with Amelia Melbourne-Hayward in a recent interview.

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Good Guidance: Participaction Strikes Again!

Not sure if children you know are striking the right balance between physical activity, sleep, and sedentary time?  No need to fear – Participaction is here! Participaction has just released an online Benefits and Guidelines tool on their very user-friendly website. Check it out!

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Weekend Inspiration with Gil Penalosa

Have you had the chance to hear one of Gil Penalosa’s talks? If not, check out this recent video posted by Leo Suarez. It is a deep-dive into questions about what makes a good city and what makes a good urban park. Tune in – this isn’t one to miss.

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Great Urban Parks Campaign Resources

Are you a professional in the field of parks or planning? Are you looking for evidence-based educational resources and training material on this subject? Look no further: the ‘National Recreation and Parks Association Guide’ has it covered.

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