Terrorism

April 14, 2016, 1pm PDT
The administrator of the Transportation Security Administration says public transportation systems in the United States are relatively safe from terrorist attack. His reasons for that assessment might surprise.
The Washington Post
March 23, 2016, 9am PDT
The city of New York responded to Tuesday terror attacks in Brussels by increasing security a frequent target of terrorists: transit stations.
Politico New York
December 15, 2015, 9am PST
Rail travelers are not subject to the same degree of security measures as air travelers according to security experts, reports Ron Nixon for The New York Times. Yet far more travel by rail than plane, and rail has been a terrorist target abroad.
The New York Times
August 26, 2015, 5am PDT
Friday's foiled attempt by an alleged terrorist to massacre civilians on a Paris-bound, high-speed Thalys train has raised fears that a similar attack could be launched on one of America's lesser-speed trains. Are current security measures adequate?
The New York Times - U.S.
August 23, 2015, 1pm PDT
Massacre on a Paris-bound train was averted in France on Friday due to the courageous actions of three Americans, one in the Air Force another in the Oregon National Guard, who rushed and subdued a Moroccan man armed with an AK-47 and a handgun.
The New York Times
March 4, 2015, 8am PST
With as many as a half-dozen groups vying to develop an NFL stadium in Los Angeles, things were bound to get ugly. And they did. A report warns of a possible terrorist attack at one stadium site. The report's publisher? Backers of a rival stadium.
California Planning & Development Report
July 18, 2014, 8am PDT
Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) expressed irritation that Chicago is no longer a world-class city when it comes to building heights. The issue arose during a Senate floor discussion on the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act. Chicago's Willis Tower ranks #11.
Politico
June 12, 2014, 2pm PDT
The grand opening of the 9/11 memorial and museum is derided by critics as a cold, uninviting public space, and 'ritualizing grief on a loop'
The New York Times
Blog post
June 3, 2013, 5pm PDT
Shutting down cities as a response to terrorism makes such violence more rewarding and thus more tempting.
Michael Lewyn
May 8, 2013, 9am PDT
In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings, Eric Jaffe explores how cash-strapped cities will handle terrorism. "The short answer is public surveillance cameras. The long answer is smarter public surveillance cameras."
The Atlantic Cities
April 19, 2013, 6am PDT
Monday’s Boston Marathon bombing was “an attack on public space,” writes architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne. But that doesn’t mean we should respond by closing off the sidewalks and streets the bombers targeted.
Los Angeles Times
April 17, 2013, 12pm PDT
Having the resources and training to adequately respond to bombings and incidents of mass violence are more effective than trying to prevent every act of terrorism from happening, says public safety authority.
Next City
December 19, 2011, 2pm PST
For almost a decade, security features have been added to the perimeters of important public buildings without regard for aesthetics, and now are being 'beautified,' across the nation.
The Atlantic
December 2, 2011, 10am PST
Josh Stephens writes that while Al Queda seems obsessed with air travel, they have attacked transit in other countries and the U.S. system is vulnerable.
InTransition
September 15, 2011, 12pm PDT
Arguing against a regional transportation tax, the Georgia Tea Party says that we shouldn't build any more light rail because terrorists might see it as an attractive target.
Treehugger
Blog post
September 11, 2011, 7am PDT

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance– PresidentFranklin D. Roosevelt, 1932

This being the decade anniversary of the World Trade Center and Pentagon terrorist attacks, it seems a good time to consider how our society responds to such threats, and what planners can do to maximize safety.

Todd Litman
August 19, 2011, 7am PDT
A decade after terrorist attacks looked to usher in an age of security-heavy architecture, new projects in cities are eschewing the security bunker for eyes and feet on the street.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer
December 20, 2010, 10am PST
Reports to Congress have suggested a terrorist attack on a minor substation could knock out the whole grid. An infrastructure expert says, "That's a bunch of hooey."
Miller-McCune
May 10, 2010, 8am PDT
Slate's Fred Kaplan points out that the Times Square bomber was thwarted because of Jacob's famous "eyes on the street."
Slate
December 8, 2008, 10am PST
Buildings and public spaces were the focus of recent terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India. This op-ed wonders how the building and design professions should respond.
Buildings