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4060014192_d62dd55deb.jpgCities are
launching pads for all sorts of human aspirations. (Photo: Gold41 via

Yesterday, at The
, Aaron Renn posted a thoughtful essay about the idea of
the "city as platform." He looks at all the different meanings of the
word platform and muses about how they apply in the urban

To me, the most intriguing idea in Renn’s post is the vision of "the
city as a manifesto":

The political platform version wasn’t something that
originally came to my mind when thinking of this, but it too has
applicability. What is your city all “about”? What does it stand for?
What is its ambition?…

Think about the great cities of America, and they all seem to have
something of a point of view on the world and what it should be like,
even if it isn’t totally clear. Especially for those cities where the
civic ambition and POV is murky, a process of reflection on this is
clearly warranted. Going back to the notion of a stage, since not
everyplace can be New York or London, the question might be how you can
create a premier stage or environment in which to attract notice for a
focused set of activities or ambitions.

What about it, folks? What are the ambitions of your city, if you
live in one? How could they be different? Does your city need to aim
higher? Let us know in the comments.

More from around the network: EcoVelo,
home of some of the most beautiful bicycle pictures on the Internet,
shares some photographic tips. Biking in Dallas
wonders about the possibility of a Ciclovía in that Texas
city. And FABB
has the scoop on a car-free challenge from The
Bike Lane

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