Surely every self-styled urban visionary, and quotation-centric student of prose, knows the magic words attributed to monumental, "city beautiful" Chicago architect Daniel Burnham: "Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir men's blood and probably will not themselves be realized."
A recent case-in-point came two years ago, when President Obama invoked Burnham in his inspirational 2008 speech, urging expansion of high-speed rail in America.
There is nothing wrong with such inspiration based on large visions and diligence. But, Burnham's words need updating in order to communicate enhancement of sustainable cities in the digital age.
Here is a start, with five alternative slogans, and why we should use them:
You know the score: the digital age has amplified the art of efficient consumption. To sell today's message of the critical relationship of land use and transportation, jobs close to home and multi-modal forms of transit, punchlists are in, treatises out.
Any successful urban adage, such as "@mayorsmith: we need form-based zoning in Anytown", needs to be, well, what you just read.
Introducing a complete streets program or sidewalk dining? Flip camera in hand, or you lose.
It's not about dining rooms or produce sections of supermarkets anymore.
No elaboration needed.
Tongue-in-cheek? Of course, but with a not-so-subtle message.
In today's America, we need even more New Age Burnhamisms in the quest to communicate urbanist messages with a populist voice.
Follow Charles R. Wolfe on Twitter: www.twitter.com/crwolfelaw