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Scientific American, December 16, 1916 Urban Engineering in 1916: Science and Technology for the City

In the year these images were published, a century ago, an equal number of people in America lived in the cities and in the countryside. But by the end of the decade the urban population was larger, as farms replaced horses and laborers with machines and farmhands and their families moved to the cities to work in factories that paid more than they could earn as agricultural laborers.

From photographs, art and movies we have some idea of the extremes of city living (then and now!). In New York, for instance, we can see the squalid slums photographed by Jacob Riis, and we can peek in on the opulent life of Gilded Age industrialists (robber barons?) such as Andrew Carnegie, whose extravagent mansion is now the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum. But the vast majority of people living in cities with large and dense populations relied heavily on technology to enable them to live and work comfortably or even tolerably. Housing, transportation, electricity grids, water supplies, sewer systems—these made up the body of modern city life.

Our slide show here is a small peek into the vast complexity of the urban engineering that goes into helping a city survive and thrive. For a more complete look at the growth in the technology over the past 170 years, our Scientific American Archive is available for purchase here:

Source: Scientific American

This article is culled from daily press coverage from around the world. It is posted on the Urban Gateway by way of keeping all users informed about matters of interest. The opinion expressed in this article is that of the author and in no way reflects the opinion of UN-Habitat.

Ajibola Oseni Waste management and ocean

Captures of waste washing up on the atlantic coast of Lagos.

Julius Mwelu/ UN-Habitat World Cities Day 2014

World Cities Day was established on 27 December 2013 by the General Assembly in its resolution A/RES/68/239, in which the General Assembly “decides to designate 31 October, beginning in 2014, as World Cities Day, invites States, the United Nations system, in particular UN-Habitat, relevant international organizations, civil society and all relevant stakeholders to observe and raise awareness of the Day […]”

World Cities Day is expected to greatly promote the international community’s interest in global urbanization, push forward cooperation among countries in meeting opportunities and challenges in urbanization and contribute to sustainable urban development in cities and towns around the world.

The general theme of World Cities Day is Better City, Better Life.

The first World Cities Day was commemorated on 31 October 2014 and was hosted by Shanghai Municipality, in the People’s Republic of China.

World Environmental day celebrations

Pictures comemorating the world enviromental day