Applying Urbanism Patterns to Help Turn a Shithole Like Ferguson into a Modern Garden City.

fergie In our analysis, Ferguson Missouri is more of a critical historical teachable moment for African-Americans than Hurricane Katrina in terms of risk assessment and emergency preparedness. While Hurricane Katrina woke African-Americans up to the importance having emergency preparedness and a plan to deal with unforeseen events, Ferguson woke up many African-Americans to the eye-opening embarrassment that we African-Americans may have black neighborhoods, but we do not have a black communities with a foundation to ensure quality of life and prosperity. It is time for African-Americans to realize right now the biggest hidden threat to our people security is not structured racism but our own apathy. First thing first - the local population of Ferguson need to recall the mayor and city council and dissolve the local police department. In regards to the police department, sell all those military vehicles and all that tactical gear shit those police got too – better yet, burn that shit in a bonfire. Once the local population seize control of their city, then it time to take over and establish both a media platform and economic engine to empower the local population to be both informed and getting income locally. That means the city has to take a new fresh start and redesigned, so run out all the bloodsucking businesses by any means necessary. Then the local population own their city and establish a new economic infrastructure designed to sustain the city of Ferguson and make it a place where people can enjoy a quality of life and a real community. But let’s be honest – those shiftless ass black folks in Ferguson ain’t going to do shit but stay shiftless ass black folks. Do you see anybody trying to recall the mayor in Ferguson right now? What are the local black population waiting around for to do the recall? I mean, the city already brought out tanks, rubber bullets and put guns all up in their faces and shot some kids up – what is the local population in Ferguson still sitting on their ass for? These Ferguson black folks don’t think their Ferguson mayor was consulted beforehand on how the police force will engage the black population? Who pay taxes just to fund a police department to shoot their kids up? Black people in Ferguson Missouri fund a police department to shoot their kids up. This is a town of 20,000 – that means the police should have known Michael Brown by name if they were true community policing cops. So let’s be honest – we are just imagining what Ferguson can do but the reality is, those shiftless ass black people over in Ferguson ain’t going to do shit but walk around holding their hands up saying don’t shoot and sell the “hands up don’t shoot” slogan on t-shirts for $7.99 so let’s pretend what can be done as a teachable moment for our people. Geo-Intelligence Analysis of Ferguson geointel The upcoming Hustle Space has a component called Hood Space where my crew spent the past two years performing geo-intelligence on urban communities to compare data and find business models and urban solutions for these communities based on global research we gathered from cities around the world. So we are going to use our experience to show I think what is so obvious about Ferguson it is embarrassing. If you look at Ferguson on the map above, what do you notice? You should notice that the city of Ferguson is next to an airport, an international airport. Second, you should notice the city of Ferguson is next to the Mississippi River which is a major water transport that goes to the port in New Orleans. But there is one more and you have to look around but St. Louis is a major railroad transportation hub and you should see train tracks and a huge train depot nearby. And last, you see two major interstates right above Ferguson and right below Ferguson. And this is a city that is fucking 68% black and these shiftless ass local black folks sitting on economic infrastructure like this but they just focused on being the victim of racism. By the way, it is obvious Ferguson is obviously a major drug hub so let’s not entertain this angle as it is not relevant. wildstrip I want you to notice this road because this is very important most likely, other black suburbs and small towns are setup like this. Do you see what appear to be a 6-lane road where two of the roads are there for parking cars? shithole Now, this is a common sight we see all over in suburban areas and that is some strip with about 4 lanes and small strip mall stores on the side with plenty of space for cars to park. No offense but this is the dumbest crap I ever seen and this is how people end up spending all their money on gas and cars and time driving around and not working out because they are in their cars driving around. And in this setup, anybody who is riding a bike or walking look like they are poor or suspicious as this strip mall setup promote the use of gas guzzling cars and poor active lifestyle. In order for African-Americans to have genuine progress, we must look for successful patterns and practices worldwide and apply these solutions to our situation. We can no longer as African-American sit around talking about black identity, black history and kwanza and the white man and white racism in a 21st century global economy. In the 21st century, African-Americans need to focus only on winning so we can do for self, our people and have a future setup for prosperity for our future generation. So we have to look for solutions and the solution to transforming a shithole like Ferguson is to apply modern urbanism techniques and that is by incorporating elements of a modern garden city. Garden City Concept thevenusproject A garden city is an urban concept that harmonize an urban environment with green spaces and active activities. The concept was proposed by Ebenezer Howard and you can research his concept on “social cities” at the following http://urbanplanning.library.cornell.edu/DOCS/howard. In the image above, you are looking at a drawing from Jacque Fresco the leading modern thought leader on future urbanism who help refine the garden city concept. brasila Notice how Brasilla in Brazil made an expansive green space the center of the city with mid-density buildings off to the side. This model provides concentrated local economics where people do not have to travel far to shop and use local resources. The model also allow people to take their bike to work or go bike on the weekend or go jogging on the weekend. If you want to go shopping, take a walk or roller blade. Now let’s take it a step further, can you hold outdoor events like a concert festival or a farmer markets or even a night market for the local community? Do you see all of the economic opportunity here for both micro-entrepreneurs and startups and mid-size businesses and industries? Also, do you notice something else? That means people can go out and mingle with each other and people see someone they think is cute and they get together and fall in love. This is a beautiful natural community and use of green space for people to live happy active healthy lives without spending a lot of money or driving everywhere. Look at the video of the garden city concept going on in Dubai. In fact, this garden city is the new mid-city model being done all over the world and China is on the forefront with impressive implementations. And also you want to know a garden city secret my African-American friend? This is also the model being built up in Africa right now and this model is going to attract so many from the African Diaspora to repatriate back to Africa, including African-Americans because this garden city model offer all the best of a city and a natural quality surrounding to relax. Here is another point of why we African-Americans cannot ignore garden cities – we don’t need cops. When did the black community ever had cops that were worth anything anyway? In a garden city concept, almost everybody know everybody and people know strangers and pay attention to strangers and activities which humans do naturally. You can get rid of cops and use a private security force and just have the county sheriff take care of arrests and warrant which is who actually does these things – what the fuck does local police do anyway beside ticket vehicles and shoot black men – you can setup red light cameras and have cameras in public areas to monitor for safety. So in terms of self-governance, when you have people out and about and living an active lifestyle and economic opportunities for the local community, crime actually go down significantly. So How We Can Transform Ferguson Into a Garden City? 3rdstreet The problem with mid-cities in America like Ferguson is they are controlled by scared white people who use the city resources and revenue funds to pretty much negatively target the growing black/Hispanic population instead of buildup infrastructure to accommodate a thriving city future. So these scared white people hire cops and the cops like to play soldier and get tactical gear and they bragging to other cops in other mid-cities how they shot a black person on social networks and word of mouth and those cops get off on that. So you don’t see progress because it basically boils down to scared whites trying to stay in power at any cost and a weak black/Hispanic population too unsophisticated to take over a city they are a majority in. We can talk about plenty of California and Texas towns with majority Hispanic population with the same setup. That is why the first step is to recall the mayor and city council and take over the politics and get rid of the city police force through dissolution and use that money to re-invest in development. Then the second thing is have serious experts on establishing a garden city concept to move the city to being a place accommodating a quality of life for the kids, adults and seniors. And that is going to involve serious changes and it may be the case that someone from China has to come in or someone from Dubai has to come in and architect the garden city. Then you issue bonds and who will buy those bonds? China and Dubai new money wealthy will buy it, fuck asking these bigots in America who hate anything we brothas and sistas try to do anyway. Build statues of Chinese and Arab rich moguls and name libraries and hospitals after them if they putting up the dough. The key components that Ferguson can do to transform is the following elements. Transform the Strip. I would leave the four lane road that goes through the middle but I would wipe out all those parking lots in front of the commercial buildings on that strip and lay down a walking/biking path lined with trees and nature and benches. I would tear down those shitty stores and build up mid-density housing/commercial buildings on top of them. People can park their cars and then walk the block or bike the block and browse stores and walk home. Black people definitely need to get that active lifestyle anyway and the concentration of mid-density commercial will blow up the economic revenue. Consolidate in Cluster Grids. Just like a game of Sim City 2000, you consolidate the schools, the hospital and city services in their own clusters. You create economic clusters and industries next to each other to attract investments and innovations and quality residents who can pay the tax coffers. This will transform the city into having the best services and become more international as a place of innovation. Setup the Transport Lines. St. Louis was designed to be the center of American trading during the Industrial Age and has all of the airport, waterway and trains so you can build all kind of micro-manufacturing companies that can import/export out of the city, including high-tech design. And guess what you have sitting around a city with two major highways, train hub and water hub? You guess damn right – you have a lot of damn shipping containers that can be transformed into pop-up shopping malls and converted to pop-up kiosks and cats can take over that industry and ship them out all over. Moving Forward family The African-American community need to wake up right now in light of Ferguson and realize how we need to take back our own communities from racist cops and city officials who more focus on keeping black people down than lifting the city up. And African-Americans must accept responsibility that our apathy and not working collectively for group politics and not doing group economics has cause harm to our communities and our people and we must look at how we cannot let our children live through the same mistakes our current generation experienced. We must have empowered communities and we have a right to a quality of life. Ferguson is on the spot right now to do the recall but from what we seen so far, the black people in Ferguson ain’t doing shit but marching around with their hands up talking about arrest the cop when these shiftless ass black people paid that cop to go around shooting black kids through their taxes and their own apathy. I was told to always follow the money when I watched the Wire on HBO and Amazon Prime and if you follow the money, it was the dumbass black people in Ferguson who paid to have a racist police force that is their enemy. Who pays for their enemy to gather military weapons and kill their kids – oh, black people in Ferguson, that’s who. So you cats over in Ferguson better get off your ass and do that recall or face further repercussions from the African-American community at large. As far as I’m concerned, the black community in Ferguson killed a young black man from our younger generation through their apathy and allowing a system to manifest unchecked that ultimately put Michael Brown in the position to be shot. So you local Ferguson population should not get too mad at the cop who did the shooting and talking about arresting him when you black people was signing the cop paycheck with your tax dollars. If the local Ferguson population want to really honor Michael Brown, then they know the right thing to do is launch the recall right now and build an environment and a city for our young generation to live in urban prosperity and a quality and life that Michael Brown did not get to experience.

25 thoughts on “Applying Urbanism Patterns to Help Turn a Shithole Like Ferguson into a Modern Garden City.

    1. What makes you think once this is built( if course no one is gonna build in this shit hole now) that the blacks would be able to sustain a community that’s livable? Just look at all the other cities that were predominately white that where destroyed once the blacks migrated to them from the south. Nice dream. Not realistic.

      1. How you frame this in a black identity context would not work and I agree with that. The same way whites created white flight suburbs thought making cookie cutter subdivisions filled with McMansions, Walmart and Lowe’s and strip malls and commercial real estate thought they can sustain that shit and ended up destroying the economy, wiping out trillions in investments and cause white countries like Iceland and Ireland to go broke and ceded USA economic power to China to gain momentum. So you if you ever want to compare what blacks did with urban cities where many urban cities already stabilize their housing market to all these empty ass McMansion subdivisions with for rent signs all over those white suburbs then be honest about the assessment and scale.

        I have no expectations of a black identify city and if you read the article I clearly said bring in Chinese and Arab money to invest and build as these groups already built garden cities for quite some time. It definitely can be done easily by the 70% African American population in Ferguson -just remove the failure white identity bigots out of power and out the picture and work with real global money and real urban solution experts worldwide.

  1. No way. Why would u want to improve parts of town they intentionally let go of? In the same area where we have political power or chamce to gain any. We must break away and form our own economy. Self imposed segregation. Juche economics.

    1. Scalar that same perspective was in the back of my mind as i was writing this. We could just go to Ghana or Botswana or even China free trade zones and build the garden city concept from scratch than mess around with shiftless folks who dont want to seize political and economic power.

  2. I have enjoyed your site for some time now and appreciate your efforts to educate and engage under-served communities. However, this topic hits home for me. I have just one question. Have you ever visited the city of Ferguson? You’ve made multiple references to the ‘shiftless ass black people’ who are residents of this town and I just wonder if you are maybe misinformed by the images of Ferguson portrayed in the media. Your suggestions for transforming Ferguson into a garden city is commendable. But are you aware of the current and ongoing transformations to the Ferguson ‘strip’ OR the community gardens OR the farmer’s markets OR the walking/bike paths etc that have thrived over the last 12 years. Maybe CNN failed to cover this. I digress, in the end many good suggestions that I hope the residents of Ferguson consider and act on in the near future.

    1. Ellie Brooks,

      I don’t understand your question angle of “visiting the city of Ferguson” – I have been there and even know people there right now but I really want to say I never been there to see where you were trying to go. You don’t need to be there which is the whole purpose of the geo-intelligence section I brought up in this article. I don’t think me or others are misinformed and you going to be very hard-pressed to convince anybody that the black population in Ferguson are anything but shiftless ass black folks with their demographics of 68% and observing who is currently in political and economic charge in that city. Convince us when 68% of Ferguson get the balls to recall.

      Current and ongoing transformations? Are you making up things as you go along? I have a feeling you are not part of that 68% African-American demographic in Ferguson as you defend Ferguson to say the things you say (translation – you are non-black pretending to have a concern). It is kinda obvious.

      The reason why is you are acting like the typical non-black person who ignores or don’t show concern for economic development angle when it comes to African-Americans issues. Did you notice the other people posting comments discuss economics – and you didn’t? So you not faking anybody at Dream and Hustle – that was the first giveaway I instantly noticed – you talking about parks and bike paths and generic references to some kind of ongoing transformations but you did not say how this will help the black population or create any form of economic empowerment. So I don’t believe you part of that 68% demographic in Ferguson until I get a pic.

      using phrases like “under-served communities” also didn’t help your case. So now that you are exposed, stop pretending you understand where we coming from and you can talk on the same level so please re-post and tell us where you really going with this. And when you do re-post, your concern for economic matters when it comes to the 68% population will be observed by me and the other readers as to your true angle and motivation for talking to us in the first place.

  3. This idea would be best applied to us going into unincorporated parts of your county, then with a small number of peoole, they could incorporate into their own town! Then we’d set the zoning laws, police and schools! Protesting just shows how politically dum we are. Do asians protest over here? No, they already know who the enemy is. Fixing a town, whites sat up and own wont make them treat us better. America makes 14 trilly a month! We dnt see none of that.

    1. Scalar what you describe is what “white flight” been recently doing so i know what you said is real. It called super-white cities where they find an unincorporated part of a big city and take over.

      Actually i like this because im not a big fan of working with or helping those who not willing to help themselves like the blacks in Ferguson

  4. In true Ed fashion, your response is what I expected. However, I won’t take up additional screen estate on your blog with justifications or proofs. I will say that I am black and actually reside in a community near Ferguson. I apologize if my opinions came off as brash, however as I mentioned before I agree with your solutions. My only concern is the all of the negative rhetoric that continues about Ferguson and St. Louis County as a whole. My intent was to hopefully shed some light on the fact that there are individuals who support and work tirelessly to implement similar solutions in and around the Ferguson community. Nevertheless, one thing I’ve learned specifically from reading your blogs is to be the change you want to see in your community. Therefore, instead of wasting time typing I instead will redirect my energies towards answering your call to action and start right now with preparing and planning for some of the concepts you’ve mentioned above. As always thank you Ed for your ideas and insights. Have a good one.

    1. Elle some kid died, the police force used a militarized response against the people and we see no recall

      you may want to think the black people outside is praying for your area but the black community is tired of our people not doing anything but being a victim all the time..

      until you can show us a recall and real result as a response, every you say is meaningless…you are not going to introduce a bunch of worthless emotions and opinions when the other side produced guns and death and show of force against you….i look forward to seeing your action executed…

      i dont want to come off at harsh but the inaction coming from Ferguson is more damaging than the shooting itself

    2. Elle, I live in Kansas City. This morning I went very hard on the former Mayor of Kansas City, a preacher who is a proven, serial business and economic development incompetent and nincompoop. This same preacher will be re-elected this fall, largely unopposed. As payment for his “services”, he has been handed one opportunity after another to enrich himself and his spouse (she has a well-paid position doing nothing but FUBAR’ing) and this “power couple” has nothing to show for all that despite being handed opportunities that others would kill or die for. He’s been given all this opportunity to serially fail in payment for their years of gatekeeping, aiding and abetting folks who run roughshod over the poorest folk in Kansas City, and further enriching members of the white power elite on this end of our state.

      He is now the sitting president of the congressional black caucus. I had a run-in with one of his aids a few years ago who attempted to threaten my job for criticizing what Kansas City Power and Light was doing in the so-called Green Zone (another Cleaver disaster). With pathetic misleadership such as this, at this end of the state which has its own problems distinct from STL – we don’t have a prayer of making progress on many fronts in any kind of a popular mass scale. http://subrealism.blogspot.com/2014/08/rule-of-law-sitting-president-of-cbc.html

      Until the current crop of geriatric fools still squatting on the pot of political influence and power in black constituent America die off, or cease to be useful for the elites for whom they’ve gatekept lo these many long and wasted decades, we’re kind of stuck in a political electoral quagmire.

      1. CNU I have no clue why she came here trying to paint lipstick on a pig. Our people do that too much, trying to present some “both sides” instead of take on the matter at hand

        1. You know what mayne, thousands are going to turn out and put this placeholder back in office this fall, no questions asked, no thought or analysis given, and no hope for the conservative republican who perennially and unsuccessfully runs against him. He will of course run unopposed as the incumbent democrat here in town.

          That’s why a whole impotent, incompetent, and utterly ineffectual mob of preachers, non-lawyering lawyers, historical figures from 50 years or more ago, etc…, are taking up space and breathing up good oxygen in the capital building and we have absolutely nothing to show for it.

          The whole war on drugs was enacted with the support of the CBC, and at no point, despite the conspicuous havoc and devastation it has wrought, have they seriously worked to dismantle that policy and legislative disaster. I seriously despise these clowns….,

        2. They and a whole bunch like them, who’ve held onto the mic and been granted a popular platform from which to hold forth, have an indisputable culpability as figureheads and rubber stamps for a WHOLE LOT of what has gone wrong in poor black america for the past forty years. They’re not the architects, but for damn sure they’re complicit enablers.

  5. Really Ed, really – painting lipstick on a pig? Good one. Please don’t assume that my silence in spewing negativity or making generalizations about the entire black community of Ferguson negates the that fact that I am just as enraged, frustrated and fed up with the ‘enablers’ CNU references, as you guys are. I know there are deficiencies and defectors in and around the black community. Remember I’m on your side. I agree with both you and CNU, however suggesting that no other like-minded black individuals exist in the community was your first fallacy. Moving on from emotion and feelings as you suggested Ed – I would like to know your thoughts on the following – consider that we succeed in forcing a recall vote. How do you suggest we address the historic single digit turnout among black voters in the Ferguson area. Because in my mind, to implement changes as you’ve suggested at scale in Ferguson people must of course know about the issues, know their representatives and oh – of course go out and vote. If we fail at this stage it seems all may be lost with efforts to move towards Urbanism in the community.

    P.S. I actually can’t wait to discuss this post during our next student meeting -it will definitely be an interesting dialogue.

    1. lol, Elle responds with skrong operational/logistical pragmatism. MUCH more impressed with this young lady than I am with myself….,

    2. Elle,

      The 6% African-American turnout in Ferguson was due to apathy and elements maintaining a status quo. It is already apparent right now since no action was taken already for a recall that there are African-Americans in Ferguson who are maintaining the status quo and are bought and sold.

      It just take a few people – 2 or 3 to get a 10×10 canopy with a table and start gathering petitioners – setup the canopy at the end of the block and count how many signups are for that block the first pass. Mark all the blocks on a map and the number of signups and that will give a clue what block is bought and sold and what block is energized for change.

      Political activity from the local campaign to the national campaign is knowing the neighborhood, the pastors (they are usually bought and paid for) and how the block is in terms of activism and to focus on getting the support of active blocks and working hard at blocks more stubborn to come out – shaming has to come into play if necessary.

      This is an extraordinary event that cannot be ignored – I’m not going to accept anything less than a recall and I’m working my channels to make sure a precedent is not set that a shiftless 68% African-American population just do nothing and African-Americans cannot afford to set that example.

  6. Ed thats actually a great solution and relatively easy to implement. You’re the best – expect to hear more from me on this issue in the very near future.

  7. I agree with your conclusion that starting from scratch is probably the best way to implement this idea. I think that is one thing missing among blacks. There are very few blacks that can say they had a hand in building or had the financial muscle to hire blacks to build the infrastucture in the area in which they currently live. In most black areas, the houses are white flight hand me downs as well as the store fronts. Either that or they are these microwave subdivisions built with undocumented labor.

    1. Earl it was nice of you to bring that up as we should evaluate the quality of the white flight hand me down.

      For example in Chicago the streets on the West Side use to have street cars and very wide and zoning for manufacturing and commercial is tighter. We should keep that infrastructure.

      But Ferguson I noticed the majority of homes are 1920s mail order from the Sears catalog! Yes Sears used to sell the pre-fab homes in their catalog so Ferguson was thrown together in terms of infrastructure which is why it should be torn down and rebuilt with intelligence.

      Ferguson has a great strategic location – can run hotels and long term airport parking there for starters – but the black locals need to grow a pair to recall and take this city…

    2. I did some research knowing these are pre-fab Sears catalog homes in Ferguson because I suspect they using septic tanks – yes they are primary septic tanks in Ferguson meaning this place can be torn up very easily and lay down real pipes and infrastructure.

      Septic tanks are proof that this place is a shithole

  8. Those 1920s homes could be historical, which means portions of Ferguson might be turned into a historical district. Historic districts provide a story for a community and can root it in the past. Historic properties hold their value better than most other suburbs. Also, those kit homes from the early 20th century used materials that we simply can’t get anymore. Where else are you going to get old-growth timber from the US. Those houses also have antique fixtures that could be of value. The houses not included in the historic districts could be sold for scrap to remodel the historical ones in ferguson and elsewhere.

    Certainly, rezoing or creating some tax incentive zoning overlays can augment this process. I live in Tucson, AZ and am a black archaeologist that has been doing historic preservation/heritage conservation for over a decade. I’ve seen what historic districts and tax overlays can do to create a compelling narrative for huge swaths of a city.

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