Cities may be metaphors, but those metaphors are highly mutable. That’s because cities are living organisms that draw their shape and energy from the people who live and work in them. They defy top-down planning. Just think about the many failed experiments in urban renewal that theorist Jane Jacobs disparaged because they tried to impose constructs on people who wanted no part of them. The success of cities can’t be programmed or assured. They can fall as fast as they rise.

Cities as Ideas