Abstract. The research goal of the article is to reveal the essence of the city as a projection of the inner world of man outwardly. The article reviews the modern research literature on the problems of urban life and its structure, presents the results of an author's sociological study to determine the significance of the individual characteristics of the city in which man lives. The most important orientations of the townspeople are identified: the high value of interpersonal relationships and direct contacts with friends and relatives, the increasing demands on the social characteristics of the urban environment. The paradoxical situation of the absence of ideas about a specific person in studies devoted to the peculiarities of urban life and urban culture is notch up. Defectiveness of the idea of designing special cities for pensioners, cities for the elite, aerotropolises is determined.
Keywords: city, urban identity, urban development logic, space, social characteristics of the environment, person, city for pensioners.