Is Google Glass really "killing cities" or just the douchebags who wear them? Are mines bringing cities down—literally? Is the Bowery doomed? Is Berlin really over? We examine these questions and more, in this week's edition of What's Ruining Our Cities.
Google Glass is ruining all cities
It's always fun to blame technology companies for your own personal problems, isn't it? A woman named Sarah Slocum was harassed at a San Francisco bar for wearing Google Glass: A woman flipped her off and told her "You're killing the city," then another guy tore the glasses (Glass?) off her face and ran away. He brought them back, but her purse and phone were stolen by someone else. It's all captured on video—recorded through Slocum's Google Glass, of course—and Slocum took to Twitter, begging Google to pay for her trip to SXSW to make up for the indignity. Because it's all their fault. [New Yorker, Valleywag]
Mines are ruining a Swedish town
Mines seem to cause all sorts of trouble in our cities–but the ones beneath Kiruna, Sweden, the country's northernmost town, are a particular problem. An iron mine below the city has slowly started to devour the town from below, requiring engineers to move the entire city two miles to the east. Yes, they are moving it: "More than 3,000 apartment blocks and houses, several hotels and 2.2 million square-feet of office, school and hospital space will be emptied over the next two decades—while alternatives are built on the new site." We've posted about Kiruna before, but work will finally begin next month on the gargantuan project, which includes dismantling a historic church and reassembling it piece by piece. [BBC News]