The Ideal City: Exploring Urban Futures

Edited by gestalten

 OPL BOOK SUMMARY:  The Ideal City asks: “What kind of cities do we want to live in? Every week, 1.5 million people move into urban areas worldwide in search of opportunities and a better life. What kind of home do we want to create for humanity?” This book is a collection of global projects striving to move humanity to more progressive cities that meet the needs of many while valuing Earth’s resources.

Journey around the world from one inspiring project to another. The Urban Farming office in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam is alive with greenery. The building is dripping with hanging planter boxes filled with local vegetation. This vertical farm processes food and acts as a microclimate through the building. Can you imagine the smell of the clean air there?

Designing public spaces with a human-centered approach enhances the quality of life. In San Francisco, Market Street used to be a congested thoroughfare with worn and unsafe infrastructure. When it went car-free in 2020, it became a joy of the city – calmer, accessible, encouraging more people to browse local shops.

Learn more about the super-green highway in Seoul, South Korea. The Seoul Skygarden is an elevated linear park soaring over half a mile. Beautiful and functional!

Keep this book on your coffee table — to pick up and turn to a page and be inspired by these buildings and public places. This is a book about hope. Hope for cities that are resourceful, accessible, shared, safe, and desirable.

Available at


Our Books Banner Image

Find your next great read.

One Planet Life has curated a list of recommended books to guide and inspire you.  Consider a new perspective, look back at history, try something new with the help of a practical guide, or experience the wonders of a new world!