Blogs

When I opened my email this morning I was delighted to see that the City of Flagstaff unanimously approved a SmartCode based TND ordinance. The ordinance, created to make a recent Dover Kohl designed project called Juniper Point legal, allows a more compact, pedstrian friendly urban pattern to be established within the City. This is a crucial step in providing alternatives to business as usual sprawl development. Fortunately, more and more cities - From Jamestown, Rhode Island to Miami, Florida, to Montgomery, Alabama - are making smart growth a legal and easy choice. Blog Post
Nov 29, 2007   By Mike Lydon
Online versions of journals have made quick inroads at universities. However, subscriptions are expensive and those outside universities seldom have access. A new generation of open access journals is making planning research accessible beyond the campus. Some examples illustrate the range of material now available. Some are fully accessible and some are partially open to non-subscribers: Blog Post
Nov 29, 2007   By Ann Forsyth
A bit of bizarre news caught my attention recently and it got me thinking. It was about these roads in Japan that had been designed to play music as cars drive over them. The engineers behind this idea cut thousands of grooves into the roadway, separated them by certain specific intervals, and then drove their cars. What resulted is a weird humming melody that reverberates in the cars as they drive. The video linked below showing the roads and their songs is awesome, but so much more could be done. Blog Post
Nov 27, 2007   By Nate Berg
Journalists and bloggers love to argue over city rankings which tend to multiply faster than the tribbles on star trek.  Which city is the friendliest?  What cities have the nicest parks?  What cities are the best places to live for mildly overweight divorcees between the ages of 32 and 34?  The data is scrutinized and then how it was interpreted lambasted as ridiculous.  And of course rankings are ridiculous.  Cities are too complex to boil down to a few numbers. Blog Post
Nov 26, 2007   By Scott Page
One of the more powerful concepts to come out of the information and services economy is the Long Tail. Blog Post
Nov 26, 2007   By Samuel Staley
Over the last few weeks, I have participated in two panels on Social and Environmental Sustainability. The first one was at the Ringling School of Art’s "Designing for Life" conference, the second was at BuildBoston where Adaptive Environments organized a day long symposium on Universal Design. In both cases, design took center stage. Design as a means towards change, and design as a business force. This is good news for advocates of Universal Design. Blog Post
Nov 23, 2007   By Barbara Knecht
Many families move to sprawled, automobile-dependent suburbs because they want a safe place to raise their children. They are mistaken. A smart growth community is actually a much safer and healthier place to live overall. Blog Post
Nov 20, 2007   By Todd Litman
Last year California was one of the states targeted by libertarians in the post-Kelo environment for an initiative that, if successful, would essentially outlaw takings. The country is still at near-fever pitch about eminent domain, but the really scary aspect of the legislation (modeled on Oregon's Prop 37) was that it would have virtually tied local governments' hands with regard to regulatory takings as well. In California Proposition 90 failed to pass after the New York developer who was financing the campaign stopped funding it. Blog Post
Nov 18, 2007   By Lisa Feldstein
Transcontinental flights are a great time to catch up on reading, and a recent flight from San Jose to Chicago inspired this blog post. As I was reading book #1 (below), I realized that a number books have been published recently that have important things to say about cities although they might be dismissed too easily as reactionary, ideological, or simply not relevant to urban planning. Blog Post
Nov 15, 2007   By Samuel Staley
Here at Planetizen and Urban Insight, many of our efforts to serve the planning community take place on Windows and Mac computers that would, much like your own computers at your home and office (or even your sparkly new iPhone), dwarf even the most powerful machines of a generation ago. We use these computers to build websites, create maps, share data, explore 3D environments, design, organize databases, and lots of other tasks that can bring new worlds to life without shoveling an ounce of dirt. Blog Post
Nov 12, 2007   By Chris Steins