Telework and City centers: imagining the futures

I remember, in the early 1970s, wondering about the impact of widespread telecommuting on CBDs (Central Business Districts). How might the CBDs be transformed by that? What would the CBD’s roles be then?

But my first priority in 1973 was to discover whether telecommuting worked at all in the real world; never mind the chances of millions of home-based telecommuters suddenly popping into existence.

I recall drafting a paper on the optimum size of cities being around 500K-800K population. My reasoning was that this mid-size could preserve most of the key characteristics of big cities without all the nasty side effects like traffic congestion, air pollution, etc. Those key characteristics included a large enough tax base (based on property) to provide basic services including transit plus art and entertainment centers and other facilities that tend to make a place unique. The paper remained as a draft and I never got it published.

Continue reading Telework and City centers: imagining the futures