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Last Updated: Wednesday, 26 April 2006, 13:35 GMT 14:35 UK
Urban activist Jacobs dead at 89
Jane Jacobs
Jane Jacobs was hailed as one of the great urban thinkers of her time
The social activist and renowned urban development critic Jane Jacobs died on Tuesday aged 89, her publisher says.

Jacobs, an American-born Canadian, is best known for her 1961 book "The Death and Life of Great American Cities".

She challenged assumptions she believed damaged modern cities, opposing large highways, warning of urban sprawl and advocating integrated, diverse cities.

A US native, she lived for many years in New York before moving to Toronto in the late 1960s.

Influence

"Jane Jacobs will be remembered as one of the great urban thinkers of our time," Toronto Mayor David Miller said in a statement.

"Her contributions and insights have forever changed the way North American cities are developed."

Neil Thomlinson, associate professor of city politics at Ryerson University, said Jacobs had a profound impact on transforming the way major metropolitan centres are developed.

"Until she came along, the planning industry was just very technocratic and not about people," Thomlinson told Reuters news agency.

"I think you'd be hard pressed to go anywhere (now) where people are talking about the development of large urban centres and not see her influence."





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