New York is one of the most vertical cities on the planet- the contained space of Manhattan has pushed buildings up, not out. But while buildings can grow upward, more and more pedestrians crowd the same amount of street space. One fantastic solution comes from architect Tiago Barros: a network of pedestrian bridges, far above the ground.
"Sky Network" would be a system of platforms, without supporting columns. Barros envisions a pedestrian and cyclist Garden of Eden: no cars, no traffic lights. It would save energy by using motion sensors to turn LED streetlights on and off.
Of course, the idea is a wild one: it's hard to imagine getting everyone to go along, especially the people and businesses below the bridge level, who would lose sunlight and walking traffic. But it's an inventive solution to a tough problem: just how do you find space for everyone in New York? Ultimately, the answer will likely be to put them in Brooklyn and Queens. But this is a lot more fun to imagine.
And compared with Barros' proposal to use a high speed ramp to separate cars and pedestrians, it's perfectly reasonable.