“You see the city as one must see it to deal with it effectively, not as a balance sheet and not as a battleground nor as urban sculpture, but as a place where children grow up, are educated, go to work, and live out their lives in families and as individuals who together constitute the city and by the quality of their lives our civilization.” -James W. Rouse

American Institute of Planners, Oct. 10-12,1977, James W. Rouse Papers, Columbia Archives

Rouse talks about the importance of planning cities before building them. He talks about the importance of opening up cities racially and how blacks were made uncomfortable if they were allowed into the suburbs of a city. He also lays out what the future city looks like and all of the benefits that come with it.

James W. Rouse wanted Columbia to be more than a city that people just lived in — he wanted them to be a part of it. Rouse wanted children to be able to grow up, go to school, and live out their lives in a nurturing environment. Thanks to Rouse’s vision, Columbia has developed into a family-oriented city with great places to work, as well as many leisure activities to spend one’s free time. Rouse was less focused on the monetary value of Columbia and more focused on building a city that takes care of its people.