Since this is my first blog, let me introduce myself. My name is Brent Toderian. In 2006 I was appointed the City of Vancouver, British Columbia’s Director of Planning. Before that I was the Manager of Centre City Planning and Design for the City of Calgary, Alberta. I am a founding member of the Council for Canadian Urbanism (CanU) which is discussed below. I look forward to your comments on this and future posts. Opinion
Mar 22, 2007   By Brent Toderian
In spite of my sense that we are heading pell mell into the gloom of global warming, catastrophic conflict and hopeless mediocrity, I’ve noticed a hopeful trend. Beauty and happiness have been rehabilitated from irrelevant to necessary.  It may not be an avalanche, but proponents are showing up in unusual places: a book by an environmental conservationist, another by an historian philosopher, and a Mother Jones article about the economy.  Can this portend a trend? Opinion
Mar 22, 2007   By Barbara Knecht
As I said in my last posting, the main, if not the only, topic of discussion in planning circles in New Orleans these days is recovery planning from Hurricane Katrina. A year and a half after the storm, we are getting close to having a recovery plan. In late January the Citywide Strategic Recovery and Rebuilding Plan, otherwise known as the “Unified New Orleans Plan” (UNOP), was presented to the New Orleans City Planning Commission (CPC), of which I am the Chair. The CPC has held several public hearings on the plan and we have at least one more scheduled. Opinion
Mar 22, 2007   By
As the current fascination with all things green grows with leaps and bounds, the question arises – are there any limits to what can be green? Opinion
Mar 21, 2007   By Walker Wells
What better way to envision the future of a city than with a cartoon? None, I say! Opinion
Mar 21, 2007   By Nate Berg
I drive the Bay Bridge just about every work day. I'm not proud of this fact. I never expected to be one of those dreaded suburban commuters, living off urban sprawl, the sole occupant of a compact car inching through rush hour traffic twice a day.So sue me. Or better yet, give me enough money to afford a house in San Francisco. Until then, Berkeley it is.But on my morning drive last week I saw a new feature amid the landscape of cargo containers that borders the southern side of the Bay Bridge toll plaza—that's on the East Bay side. It was a new billboard, depicted above. Opinion
Mar 19, 2007   By
Information Strategies for Answering Fundamental Planning Questions In universities in the northern hemisphere, April and May are months for completing work and moving closer to graduation. Assignments are due. Exams are looming. Students are too tired to write well and professors are too tired to notice. In the crunch for time, enterprising students look to the power of new information and communication technologies to reach out beyond their harried contexts to experts who can help them answer important questions. Opinion
Mar 17, 2007   By Ann Forsyth
First, let me begin by introducing myself. I am Parris Glendening, and I serve as the president of the Smart Growth Leadership Institute in Washington, D.C., which is part of Smart Growth America. From 1995-2003, I was Governor of Maryland, and for more than 20 years before that I served at various levels of local and county government. I am excited about being part of the network of contributors here at Planetizen and participating in the discussion.---In 1956 Pres. Opinion
Mar 16, 2007   By
I'm glad this blog to date has provided fertile ground both to challenge planning as a profession as well as to compliment planning when it happens to do something worthy.  In this spirit, I'd like to irritate many of my colleagues out there and definitively say that starchitects are not the problem.  I wish I could play the role of Stephen Colbert and ridiculously declare the end to this debate, but alas, I do not have the television airtime (or wit) to make this point as effectively as I would like.  This forum will have to do. Opinion
Mar 16, 2007   By Scott Page
I'm making a prediction: While the real estate market in RL (real life) is cooling off, the real estate market in Second Life (SL) is heating up.I was recently contacted via IM (instant message) by Elliot Eldrich. I interviewed Elliot several months ago for a feature-length article about urban planning in Second Life. (The article appeared in the January, 2007 issue of the American Planning Association's Planning magazine, but is now also available online.) Opinion
Mar 16, 2007   By Chris Steins