Episode 10 – Chuck Marohn of Strong Towns
Kevin sits down with (fellow engineer) Chuck Marohn from Strong Towns to talk about recognizing our delusions, admitting failure, and embracing the "chaos" of bottom-up action at the local level.
Here are some highlights from the discussion:
When optimism becomes delusion for city administrators.
The ways that many engineers and other professionals have built up natural defense mechanisms to avoid acknowledging failure and fallibility.
The common myth in Texas and other high growth areas that "fast growth will continue indefinitely and it will solve all our problems"—and the two possible ways it could end.
Not learning lessons from major events: droughts and near-bankruptcies.
The social and economic results of "slash-and-burn city development."
Why city leaders should be more supportive of the short-term "chaos" of bottom-up action—and more wary of the long-term chaos of rigid order.
How affluence makes people and cities less adaptive—and how small, early failures can build resilience.
Chuck's Strong Towns podcast episode on the peak delusion of the long emergency
Kevin's post for Strong Towns last year: How Strong Towns changed the way I view development
(The music in this episode is from Custodian of Records.)