11 Pages

Generating Models of Urban Sustainability: Vienna's Westbahnhof Sustainable Hill Town

Introduction The dawning millennium beckons us with a future offering enormous promise and unparalleled risk. Like the age of Dickens' two cities, the twenty-first century presents opposing faces. It will be either the century of sustainability or the century of ecological collapse. It will be the century where the continuation of the unsustainable economic practices of today precipitate irreversible catastrophes. Or it will be the century where small local successes in implementing sustainable practices and processes proliferate and transform the entire global economy into a balance-seeking relationship with our natural ecosystem. It will be the century where the analytical, reductionistic methods of science and industry that are the sources of both our progress and our increasingly unsustainable way of life will continue as the central economic paradigm: or it will be the century where a new integrative economic paradigm emerges which promises to reconcile humankind with the natural environment, whose health is the precondition for all human activity.