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“A Walk in the Park: Singapore’s Green Corridor in Light
of Manhattan’s High Line”
David Strand
Visiting Research Fellow, ARI NUS and
Professor of Political Science, Dickinson College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania
If High Line is more engineered and staged than its pastoral and preserved industrial ruin image might
suggest -- more Rudolph Giuliani and Walt Disney than Jane Jacobs on stilts -- Singapore has long been
more forthright in stressing social engineering, commercial interests, and the policing of public space in
the service of quality of urban life. The Green Corridor’s island-spanning length and country lane
ambience contrast with the more typical Singaporean high-rise and congested urban setting. The Green
Corridor as an idiosyncratic space of flows and place stimulates thinking about Singapore and, like High
Line, 21st century urbanism in its entirety.
David Strand has published two books on modern Chinese urban history -- Rickshaw Beijing: City People
and Politics in the 1920s (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1989) and Cities in Motion: Interior,
Coast and Diaspora in Transnational China (co-edited with Sherman Cochran and Wen-hsin Yeh)
(Berkeley: Institute of East Asian Studies China Research Monographs, 2007) – and two others on
political leadership and citizenship: Reconstructing Twentieth Century China: State Control, Civil Society
and National Identity (co-edited with Kjeld Erik Brødsgaard) (New York: Oxford University/Clarendon
Press, 1998) and An Unfinished Republic: Leading By Word and Deed in Early Twentieth Century China
(University of California Press, 2011).