Big Cities: Q’eswachaka

Traffic Alternatives

Urban planners and average citizens around the world are working to improve transportation in congested cities. In Bangkok, an architect fed up with his daily commute studies the combination of traditional boats and modern trains to beat traffic. In Bogota, a professor and his students develop a citywide electric car sharing system to ease congestion in dense urban areas.

Videos by Thai PBS in Thailand and TAL in Colombia. 

Upcoming Airdates

Heart of the City

The heart of many large cities lies in their historic neighborhoods but across the world, the cultural vitality of these neighborhoods is threatened by the forces of gentrification and aging infrastructure. Hear from the people of Boyle Heights in Los Angeles and the Old Quarter in Hanoi, Vietnam as they work to improve and preserve their communities.

Bringing Life to Public Spaces

Two groups strive to reinvigorate public spaces amid blocky apartment structures and rigid urban development. An artist collective from Spain travels the globe to create murals that draw life back into dwindling public centers. In Medellin, Colombia, urban gardeners create green spaces that beautify the community and empower its citizens.

Cooperative Housing

People are rethinking housing arrangements in growing cities across the globe. Many are ditching the confines of traditional apartments and opting for communal living. In Seoul, three families band together to build the home of their dreams and the urban support system they’ve never had. On a larger scale, participants in a housing cooperative in Lyon band together to share space and the responsibilities of homeownership in a Vertical Village.

Featuring segments by KBS and QLM.

Immigrant Support Systems

Big cities attract dreamers from all over the world. This episode features the people building communities of inclusion for immigrants.

In Toronto, an artist attempts to photograph immigrants from every country in the world as part of his Cosmopolis Project. Along the way, we meet one of his photo subjects and a small chorus of urban thinkers who explore the true meaning of “diversity”, the profound economic dislocation experienced by new immigrants, and why we need cities and their inhabitants to co-produce each other. Courtesy of NFB.

Helping Hands

Many people enjoy the anonymity found in city living, but this also creates dangers for more vulnerable people like the homeless and elderly.

In Malaysia, an organization called Rice & Roses feeds the needy, paying particular attention to those living on the streets of Georgetown, Penang. The group of volunteers prepares meals and delivers them, and offers free education to street children.