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Dream City: Some of Columbia's Big Dreams Were Realized, Others, Forgotten

A series of little known facts about Columbia’s past.

It may have been a pie in the sky dream.

Make a city where people could work where they live, walk to the office or the grocery store and share one car per family, as well as fellowship and friendship with neighbors.

Columbia became a city in 1967--a planned community that grew out of the vision of developer James Rouse, who wanted cities to be enriching places for the residents who lived in them.

Barbara Kellner manages the ’s in the city and has worked with Columbia Patch to develop a series on old advertisements and materials about the city.

In many ads that ran in the late 60s, advocates of Columbia referred to it as a "dream city," or the "next America."

“My point is not what could have been, but what can be,” said Kellner. “What ideas were so innovative, but can be looked at today? What’s the next thing?”

Do you have a historical tidbit about Columbia you’d like Patch to write about that has meaning and relevance today? Send your tips to lisa.rossi@patch.com.

Jessie at CA May 31, 2011 at 04:19 PM
An interesting presentation called, "21st Century Development Trends: How Will Columbia Measure Up?" is sponsored by CA and The Howard Hughes Corporation on June 1st. More deets - http://21st-century-columbia.eventbrite.com/
Lee Richardson May 31, 2011 at 07:37 PM
Walkability and bikability are worse than 1967. So many motor vehicles. Done right for safety and speed, walkers, wheelchairs, and other disabled persons can join in. Employment will improve with an urban Downtown development with its many new and already present office buildings and thousands of new residences. A college, HCC, a major hospital, a world class entertainment pavilion, and regional mall, already put Town Center in demand. To make this accessability a network connecting Columbia and not just Town Center itself, will require investment in many more paths and sidewalks and bike lanes, of course, but adding short distance transit as well will reach many more homes. Regional transit will connect to many more commuters, shoppers, and persons seeking services - both living here and coming here.
Marlon June 08, 2011 at 02:57 PM
Columbia is the best area I've ever lived in. I think the answer for columbia is more of the same, such as underground telephone and power cables, bike and foot trails... Although columbia seems like the perfect location from which to operate a business, Ive noticed alot of seemingly prime business real estate laying vacant. I think they should do something to attract businessses from the cheaper locations in the industrial sections of Baltimore.

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