“ ‘Live and let live’ was the famous Viennese motto, which today still seems to me to be more humane than all the categorical imperatives, and it maintained itself throughout all classes.”
(The World of Yesterday: Memories of a European, Stefan Zweig)
In Stefan Zweig’s description of Vienna at the start of the 20th century, it was a city where all people lived peaceful (1943). Today Vienna has still ranked the most liveable city eight times in the world (Trend N, 2017). During Easter holiday, I travelled to Vienna in Austria. What deeply inspired me was the nightlife. I will talk about it by the open spaces.
Open spaces for all people
According to the map, the city centre is surrounded by green lands and the river. And open spaces are distributed in the neighborhoods, which are connected by pedestrian roads. This ensures people walking and gathering at anytime.
Figure 1 : Vienna tourist attraction map, (2017)
As Zweig said, Vienna is a city which gathered all different cultures together then emerged them to become a Viennese culture (1943). It provides several types of places for all people to socialize. For example, there is a great space in front of St. Charles Church. It is a lakeside where people enjoy sitting on the steps around. During daytime, the church attracts a large number of travelers to visit. After a sunset, it is returned to citizens. People sit there to relax and talk, facing the beautiful water reflection of the building.
Figure 2: Sitting in front of St. Charles Church. (Authors own, 2017)
And the open spaces on pedestrian streets is another great idea. When the nights tumble down, it appears some outdoor bars along the street. Red umbrellas keep off the rain as well as supply heating in winter. Jacobs suggested that stores, bars and restaurants along the streets can keep the safety to some extend and people’s activities on the streets can also attract others (2000). This ensures the safety and vitality of nightlife in Vienna.
Figure 3 : Nightlife of Rotenturmstraße, Vienna. (Authors own, 2017).
Vienna, as an ideal city of art and culture, respects people’s needs regardless of their incomes and religions. It equally provides citizens with public places and ensure their safety. It definitely could be named a liveable city.
- Jacobs, J. (2000). The death and life of great American cities. London: Pimlico.
- Trend, Nick. “What Makes Vienna The World’s Greatest City?”. The Telegraph. N.p., 2017. Web. 25 Apr. 2017.
- Zweig, S. (1943). The world of yesterday. London: Cassell.
- Figure 1 : Vienna tourist attraction map, (2017). Mapaplan.com. [image] Available at: http://www.mapaplan.com/travel-map/vienna-city-top-tourist-attractions-printable-street-plan-guide/vienna-top-tourist-attractions-map.htm [Accessed 28 Apr. 2017].
- Figure 2: Sitting in front of St. Charles Church. (Authors own, 2017).
- Figure 3 : Nightlife of Rotenturmstraße, Vienna. (Authors own, 2017).