Top Twitter Feeds 2012

We've augmented our comprehensive list of Twitter's top sources for news and observations about urban planning, design and development by recognizing this year's Top Ten Feeds.

Read Time: 4 minutes

November 27, 2012, 11:00 AM PST

By Jonathan Nettler

Twitter escultura de arena

Rosaura Ochoa / Flickr

When we last published our Top Twitter Feeds list two years ago, the social media platform had approximately 145 million users. Earlier this year, Twitter was said to have surpassed half a billion users, cementing its status as an invaluable tool for sharing, discussing, and disseminating information and breaking news.

For 2012, we’ve recognized ten of the top Twitter feeds that we've encountered over the past year. The people and organizations we’ve spotlighted below are adept at bringing attention to their own work and the work of others, and offer insightful commentary in 140 character increments. For each entry we’ve made note of their twitter handle, their influence via Klout score, and the description they’ve provided.


Bruce Katz
Klout: 62
VP @BrookingsInst | In the face of economic stagnation, fiscal turmoil & federal gridlock, we are witnessing The Metropolitan Revolution - new book, Spring 2013

Katz, a vice president at the Brookings Institution and founding Director of the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program, focuses on issues related to economic development, and keeps followers up to date on the latest in urban related research published by the venerable think tank.

Brent Toderian
Klout: 65
City planner + urbanist, TODERIAN UrbanWORKS; Former Vancouver Chief Planner; President, Council for Canadian Urbanism; CBC Columnist/writer/speaker/city-lover.

After only six months of tweeting, the former Chief Planner, and current chief booster, for Vancouver, has quickly established himself as one of the most active and respected voices on urban issues on the platform. With more than 3,500 tweets (around 20/day), the Planetizen blogger is also one of the most prodigious.

Klout: 67
A public radio project w/analysis & news on rail, bikes, cars, transit, policy; cool visuals. From @WNYC, stations across U.S.

A partnership of several public radio newsrooms, TN provides links to transportation and infrastructure related content daily from around the web. TN has also been indispensable in keeping followers updated on the status of New York’s transit system in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.

Emily Badger
Klout: 62
Washington-based writer, contributor to The Atlantic Cities, Fast Company, Pacific Standard. Outdoor lover.

Author and contributor to several planning- and development-oriented publications, Badger engages her followers in thoughtful discussion, and delivers links on topics related to cities, design, politics, and social issues from her perch in the Nation’s Capital.

Gary Kavanaugh
Klout: 60
#carfree #bikeLA rider/writer/advocate || @LAStreetsblog SaMo columnist || Metro Expo Line Bicycle Advisory Committee member || Game development is my day job

Urban issues aren’t his day job, but you’d never know from the endless stream of provocative, unabashed, and entertaining commentary Kavanaugh delivers on a daily basis on issues largely related to transportation, and his passion for bicycling, in Los Angeles.

Klout: 58
GOVERNING covers the states and localities. Tweeting news, links and questions on state and local policy. RTs are not endorsements.

The twitter platform of the eponymous magazine provides links to nonpartisan news, insight and analysis on such issues as public finance, transportation, economic development, health, energy, the environment and technology. Their "Daily Digit" and "Who Said That?" features help make even the most mundane public sector reports compelling.

Jarrett Walker
Klout: 56
Public transit policy consultant, author of and the book Human Transit (Island Press, '11). Humanities PhD. Interested in everything.

The respected author and public transit guru fires shots across the bows of transportation engineers, planners, and public officials around the world in the bite-sized extension of his Human Transit blog. Walker isn’t shy about making his well considered opinions known.

New Geography
Klout: 51

Follow this feed for links to the latest writings on economic development, metropolitan demographics, and community leadership from the conservative website run by Joel Kotkin and Praxis Strategy Group. Whether you're interested in reading opinions on why Americans still favor the suburbs or why "red states" continue to attract "blue state" residents, New Geography is a great source for contrarian opinions to the accepted planning dogma.

Cameron Sinclair
Klout: 80
Eternal optimist and rabble rouser. Started Architecture for Humanity, won a TED Prize and advise USAID. I also tweet about Arsenal and write books.

Executive Director and cofounder of Architecture for Humanity, and one of the leaders of the socially responsible design movement, Sinclair’s twitter feed documents his globe trotting adventures as a public speaker and do-gooder, and his often anguished (but occasionally celebratory) musings on his beloved Arsenal soccer team.

Klout: 67
The goal of Archinect is to make architecture more connected and open-minded.

A popular platform for students, educators, and architects interested in progressive design since its founding 15 years ago, follow Archinect for links to the website’s latest in architecture related news, commentary, events, and competitions.

Green Healthy Community

Making Healthy Places

The editors of the book "Making Healthy Places," recently published in a second edition by Island Press, discuss the intersections of public health and planning, including key concepts such as green gentrification, health impact assessments, and AI.

September 18, 2022 - Laurie Mazur

Suburban Homes

Where Housing Costs Are Falling Fastest

Although median home prices remain close to record highs in many cities, some of the country’s priciest metro areas are seeing home prices plummet.

September 23, 2022 - Bloomberg

Aerial view of homes west of downtown Chicago, Illinois

Chicago ADUs Concentrated in More Affluent Neighborhoods

An analysis of city-issued permits shows that homeowners in gentrified wards are building accessory dwelling units at much higher rates than those in less well-off communities.

September 18, 2022 - Chicago Sun-Times

Miami and Key Biscayne

The Great American Exodus: A Conservative's Perspective

During his keynote speech on September 11 at the National Conservatism Conference in Miami, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis describes the demographic shifts in America since he became governor in 2019 in what he calls the 'Great American Exodus.'

September 27 - The Wall Street Journal

Downtown Houston and Buffalo Bayou

$100 Million to Help Fund Buffalo Bayou Expansion in Houston

Originally proposed in 2019, the Buffalo Park East Master Plan, which would extend Buffalo Bayou Park to the East End and Fifth Ward neighborhoods, is suddenly in high gear.

September 27 - Buffalo Bayou Partnership

View of Seattle skyline with houses in foreground

Community Land Trusts Make Homeownership Accessible

The organizations sell homes to low-income buyers at rates far below market prices, putting homeownership within reach for more families.

September 27 - Next City

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Hand Drawing Master Plans

This course aims to provide an introduction into Urban Design Sketching focused on how to hand draw master plans using a mix of colored markers.