Josh Stephens is the editor of the California Planning & Development Report, an independent newsletter covering land use and policy.
For some lucky candidates, tomorrow’s election will have a storybook ending. Unfortunately for anyone who understands architecture, planning, and land use, that storybook will, in many cases, turn out to be The Fountainhead.
The train wreck of ideologies that is emerging this election season is too much for anyone to categorize.
Monday, November 1, 2010 - 11:15am PDT
I write this blog from the concrete cradle of Nokia Plaza, an urban space so wondrous that the global arm of the Urban Land Institute has bestowed upon it one of five “2010 Global Awards for Excellence
." In winning such a distinguished award, you’d think that developer AEG would have invited the Laker Girls and be pouring Champagne for an ebullient crowd here in one of the world’s great public spaces. Except they’re not. In fact, I’m pretty much alone.
I don’t suppose the pigeons are carrying Cristal underwing?
Thursday, October 21, 2010 - 2:04pm PDT
I wasn't even in Los Angeles yesterday, and for once I'm glad. Everything from my Facebook feed to the morning headlines told me that traffic on the Westside yesterday afternoon was so awful that only a parade of obscenities accompanied by words like "cluster" and "show" would have sufficed to describe it. Hardened locals were driven nearly to tears behind the wheels of their unmoving cars.
The president was in town.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010 - 11:28am PDT
Even more so than usual, few people will be receiving buildings as gifts this season. They're too expensive, you can’t return them, and, notwithstanding Barbie’s Dream House, they probably won't fit under your tree. But still, this Yuletide affords ample opportunity to take stock of the works that have arisen in this most momentous of decades.
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 - 10:09pm PST
BOSTON -- If you've ever studied the bar menu at Trader Vic's then you know about such wonders as Tropical Passion, Moku Nani, and the Potted Parrot. Each is made of a unique but secret blend of dark rum, light rum, spiced rum, tropical juices, and of course "subtle flavorings." But by the time you'd realize that the only real difference is the glass they come in, you're too probably drunk to notice--or care.
Minus the palm fronds, the RailVolution conference is much the same.
Saturday, October 31, 2009 - 3:39pm PDT
Remember the legislation that, in 1965, affirmed universal suffrage in all elections? Yes, you do. It was called the National Voting Rights Act.
Saturday, April 18, 2009 - 6:18am PDT
Anyone who has picked up a greeting card, coffee mug, or calendar in the past 100 years or so can recognize the sentiments of any number of great American environmentalists: Whitman and his yawp, Thoreau and his deliberateness, Frost and his serene decisiveness. We know the exhortations of Carson, Leopold, Emerson, and Abbey. John Muir, John McPhee, and Barry Lopez are known to have taken a few strolls through the chestnuts.
Wednesday, February 4, 2009 - 6:30pm PST
Sunday, November 2, 2008 - 6:07am PST
I've always wanted, but never quite had the cred, to go to Burning Man. Instead, I went to this year's rendition of National Park(ing) Day
in the hopes that it would provide a reasonable, if diminuative, substitute in temporary
parks across the country. Creative minds can do a lot with 180 square
feet, especially when there are straight-laced passers-by to shock and
paradigms to subvert.
Sunday, September 28, 2008 - 12:29pm PDT
the rising costs of belonging to the jet set, I took my share of
flights for a few business trips and boondoggles this summer. Though
most of my plane tickets were paid for, my transportation to and from
my respective airports were not. Like any good urbanist, I approached
each airport as a challenge to see how cheaply and quickly I could get
from the airport to my in-town destination.
These were challenges that I -- or, rather, the cities -- failed more often than they passed.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008 - 8:14pm PDT