On May 4th, we will celebrate what would have been Jane Jacobs 100th birthday! A Greenwich Village local, Jacobs is most famous for saving our neighborhood from "slum clearance" and highway construction by Parks Commissioner Robert Moses in the 1960s. The Village mom and activist organized other residents and community leaders to oppose the plan, and they eventually triumphed over Moses' "urban renewal" policies.
Her 1961 book The Death and Life of Great American Cities has also been one of the most influential texts in city planning and urban policy for decades. She argues that encouraging street life and mixed-use blocks is critical for healthy cities, opposing the modernist city planning style of the day.
We have much to talk Jacobs for here in Greenwich Village. Happy Birthday Jane!