Sustainability is Technically Complex
The Classic Sanitary Approach to Cities Is, in Contrast, Complicated
Constraints of the Sanitary City
- Sanitary cities are governed from the top down, with resources provided by public funds. Shortfalls in city funding can impair the functioning and maintenance of the massive physical infrastructure required for sanitation. The sustainable city may benefit from alternative funding structures.
- Sanitary cities are managed by licensed specialists who are responsible to specific, issue oriented departments. For example, drinking water, sewage, planning, justice, finance, housing, may each be managed by different departments or bureaus. The sustainable city requires that all structures and functions in an urban place be thought of and managed as a system, not a series of loosely connected administrative units.
- The sanitary city may be seen as a tool to preserve the health and productivity of an industrial work force. The sustainable city must adopt a stance of environmental and social equity, rather than be driven by the economic interests of a wealthy elite.