Given the importance of all kinds of diversity, intricately mingled in mutual support, parttwo of the book explains the conditions for city diversity or the economic workings that produce lively cities. First, districts must serve more than one primary function to ensure presence of people using the same common facilities at different times. Second, blocksshould be short, to increase path options between points of departure and destinations,and therefore enhance social and as a result economic development. Third, buildingsshould be at varying ages, accommodating different people and businesses which canafford different levels of rents. Fourth, there should be a dense concentration of people,including residents, to promote visible city life. It is important that all of these four conditions are necessary to generate diversity, and absence of each one would result inhomogeny and ultimately dullness.Jacobs refutes the myths about disadvantages of diversity presented in orthodox planning.First she argues that diversity does not innately diminish visual order. Conversely,homogeny or superficially diverse-looking homogeneous areas lack beauty. Moreover,diversity is not the root cause of traffic congestions, which is caused by vehicles and not people in themselves. Lively, diverse areas encourage walking. Diversity is not permissive to ruinous uses- if defined correctly- either. A category of uses contributingnothing to a district¶s general convenience, such as junk yards, grow in unsuccessfulspots. In fact, to make these areas successful and thereby dispose of such ruinous uses,diversity should be enhanced. A second category of conceived ruinous uses such as barsand theaters are a threat in grey areas, but not harmful in diverse city districts. The finalcategory includes parking lots, large or heavy truck depots, gas stations, gigantic outdoor advertising and enterprises harmful due to their wrong scale in certain streets. Jacobssuggests that exerting controls on the scale of street frontage permitted to a use wouldalleviate such a use.
Part three of the book is designated to analyzing four forces of decline and regenerationin city cycles: successful diversity as a self-destructive factor, deadening influence of massive single elements in cities, population instability as an obstacle to diversity growth,and effects of public and private money.Self destruction of outstanding successful districts occurs by ousting less affluentdwellers and businesses, to replace them with more affluent or profitable ones, probablyas the multiplication of those already existing in that district. This not only erodes thevariety of dwellers and businesses as the base for diversity in that specific district, butalso has a cross-effect on the diversity of other localities by depriving them from such profitable businesses and affluent residents needed for mutual support. Massive singlefacilities such as railroad tracks, enormous parks, and college campuses create vacuumsin areas immediately next to their borders because such areas (adjoining borders) are aterminus of generalized use. Jacobs suggests to figure out border-line cases, such asspecial park uses (chess or checker pavilions), in order to blend the border and theimmediate neighboring area together and yet keep the city as city and the massiveelement (such as the park) as itself.