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Jul 20, 2021

In this episode of THE NEXT NORMAL, we reimagine our cities and our physical environments. What immediate and long-term needs has the pandemic exposed in our communities and what opportunities do we have for inspiration and innovation that lay ahead?

Dave Hardy, President and CEO of Hardy Stevenson and Associates, is an urban planner who is looking at the short-term and long-term needs of communities and cities. He talks about the health divides created by the push and pull of the pandemic.

[03:50] Dave Hardy- "COVID has shown us that healthy cities mean we have to come to grips with the health divide in the cities. We, Pre-COVID, thought healthy cities were walkable. Now we're saying, ‘Well, hold on’. We have hospitals that are over capacity. We have seniors’ homes that have been vastly neglected that have to be rethought. So COVID is pushing us to think about that. It's also pushing us to think about where we’re being pushed into a digital world. Our families are being pushed together. We have food insecurity that has been eliminated or illuminated.”

Lisa Taylor specializes in the #FutureOfWork. Lisa is the President of Challenge Factory. She illustrates three categories of community members that must be in the spotlight for planning healthy cities.

[08:45] Lisa- “So when we get to health and wellness and when we look at what it means to build a healthy city, we really need to be looking across the board at many different categories, and really look at how do we build our cities so that they're good for the youngest members of our society, for the oldest members of our society and for the most vulnerable.”

Ujwal Arkalgud is a Cultural Anthropologist, CEO and co-founder of Motivbase. Ujwal says the consumer sees past the excuses provided by government and corporations now more than ever. The community members are fuelled for change and are the drivers for healthy city conversations.

[07:09] Ujwal- “And I think what's interesting about that is for the first time the consumer’s saying I'm tired of relying on the government to do this stuff. So I'm asking the question to private entities, ‘What are you going to do? How are you going to innovate?’ Now's the time.”

Sarah Thorne is President and CEO of Decision Partners. She points out that we’ve become more aware and appreciative of the people and programs in our communities and how they’ve helped us.

[10:20] Sarah- “I think there's a new respect but there's also a new recognition that the way that we've been living isn't sustainable. And we need to build more integrated and resilient communities. "

In the next episode, Sarah brings us back to the questions of being adaptive and resilient. As we continue to explore THE NEXT NORMAL, we’ll highlight adaptive capacity and the point that everybody benefits from the resilience perspective. The things that we would think of as contributing to resilience might surprise us.

Have comments questions or ideas for our hosts? Feel free to drop us an email at hello at StoryStudioNetwork dot com.

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