Eugenie Birch's blog

Eugenie L. Birch is chair and professor of the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of Pennsylvania.

It's Been a Great Week for City Planning Here on the East Coast

It's been a great week for city planning here on the East Coast. The American Planning Association's 99th National Conference held in Philadelphia drew more than 6,000 attendees, a fact noticed by Philadelphia Inquirer writer Inga Saffron in her April 13th column titled "Welcome, Welcome City Planners," where she took the opportunity to draw local and national lessons from the event. The APA opened with Robert Kennedy's address on environmental planning and closed with an exploration of the legacy of Edmund Bacon (Philadelphia's director of city planning from 1949-1970), but more about that later.

A Big City Mayor Makes a Splash!

Big city mayors (and even some smaller city leaders) are making a big splash! LA’s Antonio Villaraigosa is dealing with crime; Chicago’s Richard Daley is turning that dusty city green; Philadelphia’s John Street has agreed to an important re-thinking of seven miles of highly developable waterfront; Miami’s Manny Diaz is working closely with Donna Shalala, President, University of Miami, to harness anchor-institution strength to downtown development. And Michael Bloomberg became a winner when he took on New York City’s school system. But of equal note is his soon-to-be announced PlaNYC, a strategic vision for 2030.