City as a wealth creating machine as mentioned by Deyan Sudjic is not a new phenomenon. Cities have been s stage to transform internal and external dynamics. Therefore, when modern city developers consider new additions to existing cities or if one decides to build a new city a key factor that needs to be taken into consideration is that it has to be considered as a product for sale.
As a result, would the customer buy the product, ie. in this context whether a person would visit, live or even consider migrating into the respective city. This directly connects with the book written by Stephan Bayley and Roger Mavity that “Life’s a pitch”. Therefore, the city has to be considered as the most important elements for a sales pitch as noted “those crucial moments which give the opportunity for a big change”.
In light of the fact that a city should be considered as a tool for that matter, the most critical tool or weapon, we need to see the importance of tolerance within a city. For instance, Amsterdam became “the center of the World’s most powerful trading state in the 17th century”, because it encouraged as per Deyan Sudjic Hagueonots, Jews, Puritans and others.
Let us now take a step back, would cities such as Kabul in Afghanistan to Sialkot in Pakistan be tolerant even though respective governments would provide unlimited resources for its development and expansion. Therefore, the most important aspects here being the importance of tolerance via transformation of the tolerance of the culture such as in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The two main states of Dubai and Abu-Dhabi are exquisite examples of tolerance of cultures leading to immense political, and socio-economic advancement. Furthermore, these states coexist with over 100 nationalities creating one waste melting pot. As a result, one can witness immense levels of trade and commerce. Some would argue here that Dubai and Abu-Dhabi are more tolerant than some Western cities.
In light of the above it is clear that city planners, technocrats, politicians and other city developers seriously plan developing their cities with above thoughts in mind. This will avoid the creation of failed cities as seen in many developed and developing nations.
Original Content written by Yatila. A. Wijemanne