The heat in Kuwait in the summer is unbearable. Yet this is only a problem between June and September. The rest of the year is fairly pleasant, especially in the morning and evening. We have to design our spaces with that in mind and not be trapped because we fear the hot months. Scandinavia is basically frozen for half the year, yet they design knowing that for the other half the weather is very good. We should do the same.
2. Most of the dwellings are within a five-minute walk of the center, an average of roughly 400 meters.
In an ideal world, the Metro would criss-cross our radial residential areas and have stops in each neighborhood center. This would officially make Kuwait a walkable city, as it means that everyone has the option of living a car-free lifestyle. I’m sure this isn’t economically feasible, but as a public health initiative, it’s priceless.
The neighborhood centers don’t have to be physically connected to each other, of course. The point is that everyone can simply go outside and have a pleasant walk and arriving at a unique and exciting destination. This would also allow the residential areas to be exponentially denser without fear of the transportation system failing because every area is now mixed-use and self sufficient.
This would eventually lead to the collapse of the ‘mall mentality’. The neighborhood centers become a truly democratic and public space. Instead of going to The Avenues to hang out, you might go to the Shamiya center and have dinner, watch a show and have a nice stroll there meeting a friend who lives in Shamiya. You get all the amenities and advantages of a mall without the parking headache.
Every neighborhood center would grow to have its own distinct character. Malls are only as imaginative as the developers that built them. A public space is democratic in nature, meaning that it is up to the people to decide how the space should evolve. I know for a fact that young, creative Kuwaitis are far more imaginative than even the best developer. A subsidy for young Kuwaiti entrepreneurs will help encourage them to converge and all use the space together, focusing their creative energies into creating a wonderfully unique, distinctly Kuwaiti experience.
-A stupid idea, but I can’t think of a better way to waste money.
Edited: Slightly less stupid (fewer interchanges) but still wasteful.