The scale and pace of metropolitan development in North America is accelerating and changing its basic urban geography. New categories have emerged to capture this change. The Metropolitan Institute at Virginia Tech has added several key concepts to this new conceptual understanding of the metropolis. This lecture explores these new concepts and places North American metropolitan areas in an evolving global context. North America is unique among developed regions in the world in that it is still rapidly gaining population. The U.S. alone is projected to add 100 million more people between 2006 and 2039. According to U.N. population statistics, the U.S. will gain 100 million more residents faster than any other nation except India and Pakistan, and thus will outgain China. Canada, an immigrant nation like the U.S., is also on pace for fast growth. This massive expansion will frame the discussion of how North America can build sustainable places that innovate new urban forms and reinvigorate its metropolitan economies.
Robert Lang est directeur du Metropolitan Institute à Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University