Elevating the street: New York, London, São Paulo

Keynote lecture, "The Street and the City" conference, University of Lisbon, April 14-15, 2016.


The street has made something of a comeback in urban theory and everyday life in recent years. In a variety of forms organized around the decelerated mobility of the pedestrian, the street has been rediscovered, revived, and increasingly fetishized as a site of authenticity, immediacy, creativity, and community. Responding to the street's heightened cultural status, as well as to its place and function in the accelerated urbanism of globalization, this lecture explores the transnational rise of the elevated walkway. From the architectural bling of New York's High Line, to London's elitist sky pools, to the precarious walkability of Sao Paulo's Minhocão highway, the lecture considers how the creative repurposing of postindustrial urban space in the form of slow promenades simultaneously resists and reinforces social division in the contemporary city.

More information is available on the conference website

 “Minhocão” by Paula Gabbai, 2009.