Blogs

The impact of the urban grocery store gap, particularly on low-income communities, has been well documented. The presence of full-service grocery store can raise the economic value of surrounding property, serve as an anchor in commercial districts, provide an important source of jobs, and lower the daily cost of living for residents. In an era of skyrocketing obesity rates, public health research shows a strong correlation between the presence of a grocery store and the consumption of fruits and vegetables. Opinion
Feb 28, 2007   By Lisa Feldstein
At Project for Public Spaces, Inc. we think successful public spaces are the key to the future of cities. By “successful spaces” we mean spaces that are used, but what we find more often than not, in the centers of cities, are some very bad spaces – meaning that they are pretty much devoid of opportunities to do anything – even though they look good. We have also found that the least successful spaces and buildings are often the newest ones. Opinion
Feb 27, 2007   By
New Orleans is experiencing a crime wave. High murder rates in the first two months of 2007 have made national attention. Anderson Cooper of CNN has been following this story. So far this year he has devoted two hour-long shows to this topic. I live in central New Orleans and my biggest complaint about the city is the high crime rate. I don’t think our city will recover if we fail to address this most serious issue. Crime makes you ask yourself – should I move to the suburbs where it’s safer and commute? Opinion
Feb 27, 2007   By John Renne
Thousands of New Orleanians have participated in planning their post-Katrina future – likely more than in any single American city-planning effort, ever. Unfortunately, the New Orleans experience definitively demonstrates the limits of orthodox community-focused planning, the kind that has been neighborhood-based and consensus-driven. Opinion
Feb 27, 2007   By James S. Russell
Thanks to Planetizen for asking me to participate in “Planetizen Interchange” with such a distinguished group. This is my first entry so to let you know a bit about me, I live in New Orleans, LA. I was displaced for 10 months to Houston, TX after Katrina destroyed my house, but I am back in New Orleans where I am a planning, zoning and land use consultant. Opinion
Feb 26, 2007   By
In spring 2007, the Texas Transportation Institute and its partners will release the newest version of the "Mobility Report." This eagerly-awaited document will chronicle the worsening congestion in urban and suburban America. The report typically spawns a frenzy of media stories as folks eagerly peruse the ranking lists finding out just how their area did. While methodology tweaks and data issues might add a few wrinkles, no one will be surprised to see congestion worse than the prior report two years ago. Surprise, surprise! Opinion
Feb 25, 2007   By Steven Polzin
It has been a few years since my last trip to Europe, so perhaps I have selective memory. But I don’t recall having to compete with hundreds of cars or choke down exhaust while exploring the streets of London. I remember navigating through seas of people that filled the city’s squares, alleyways and boulevards. Opinion
Feb 24, 2007   By Diana DeRubertis
For those admitted to graduate planning programs in the U.S., March is the season of choices and decisions. Offers appear. Decision deadlines approach. Wait lists are formed. Even those who thought they knew what they wanted may be tempted to change their minds. Having been affiliated with seven vastly different planning programs, and having worked both as a faculty member and practitioner, I can attest that the choices aren’t simple. Opinion
Feb 24, 2007   By Ann Forsyth
Reading news stories about planning is crucially important to the worth of planners, developers, public officials, policy makers, and anyone else who cares about the way communities form and evolve. By knowing what's going on in other places, those concerned with cities and their development will be better informed to analyze and approach the planning issues facing their own communities. Opinion
Feb 24, 2007   By Nate Berg
Hi - I'm excited about the start of this blog! I am the co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Next American City, where we promote socially and environmentally sustainable economic growth for American cities and suburbs in our magazine, events, and op-eds. Looking forward to the conversations over the coming months and years on this site, and I'm always open to ideas for what I should discuss here, or what our team at TNAC, including our President Seth Brown, Publisher Michelle Kuly, Editor Jess McCuan, and everyone else that makes TNAC happen, should cover. Opinion
Feb 23, 2007   By