PBS Doc Examines Development In Denver, Portland, and NYC

Three cities - three directions on how their transportation infrastructure was shaped by national transportation and housing legislation, and the role of influential leaders like CO Gov. Lamm, OR representative Earl Blumenauer, and NY's Robert Moses.

2 minute read

May 26, 2009, 7:00 AM PDT

By Irvin Dawid

The video begins with Miles O'Brien, the host, in the visibly aging NYC subway and then goes to suburban Highland Ranch outside Denver, then to Portland's bike-friendly and modern streetcar scenes. Back to NY and the expressway-divided South Bronx to see the effects of Robert Moses. Finally, all roads lead to DC where the new transportation legislation will determine the path the country takes.

"Focusing in on three cities, New York, Denver (and environs) and Portland, it features interviews with a whole host of interesting subjects including NYC DOT commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, Portland Mayor Sam Adams, BikePortland blog maestro Jonathan Maus and Columbia University's Owen Gutfreund, author of "20th Century Sprawl."

Denver Post:
"Fast-forward to the 1970s, the beginnings of Highlands Ranch and its counterpoint. Then-Gov. Dick Lamm threatened to "drive a silver stake" through the Interstate 470 beltway. Lamm succeeded in delaying the beltway, but the wrath of real estate interests and the press transformed his stake into a boomerang, thoroughly marginalizing the young governor.

While Lamm was left licking his wounds, Portland was being tempted by the same siren's song: big federal dollars to build the Mount Hood Freeway. But then-City Councilman Earl Blumenauer (now a congressman) rallied local activists to oppose speculators who were determined to demolish miles of historic urban fabric to build an eight-lane freeway through the heart of southeast Portland.

Blueprint America is more than a tutorial on urban planning and its consequences. It is a thoughtful and provocative study of human nature and political courage."

Thanks to Leonard Conly

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 in PBS

Large blank mall building with only two cars in large parking lot.

Pennsylvania Mall Conversion Bill Passes House

If passed, the bill would promote the adaptive reuse of defunct commercial buildings.

April 18, 2024 - Central Penn Business Journal

Street scene in Greenwich Village, New York City with people walking through busy intersection and new WTC tower in background.

Planning for Accessibility: Proximity is More Important than Mobility

Accessibility-based planning minimizes the distance that people must travel to reach desired services and activities. Measured this way, increased density can provide more total benefits than increased speeds.

April 14, 2024 - Todd Litman

Wood-frame two-story rowhouses under construction.

Fair Housing Cannot Take a Back Seat to ‘Build, Baby, Build’

If we overlook fair housing principles in the plan to build US housing back better, we risk ending up right back where we started.

April 11, 2024 - James Jennings

"No 710" lawn sign on green lawn.

LA Metro Board Approves New 710 Freeway Plan

The newest plan for the 710 corridor claims it will not displace any residents.

7 hours ago - Streetsblog LA

Close-up of row of electric cars plugged into chargers at outdoor station.

Austin’s Proposed EV Charging Rules Regulate Station Locations, Size

City planners say the new rules would ensure an efficient distribution of charging infrastructure across the city and prevent an overconcentration in residential areas.

April 22 - Austin Monitor

Green hills with orange California poppies in bloom in foreground in Chino Hills State Park, California.

Making California State Parks More Climate-Resilient

A recently released report offers recommendations for keeping state parks healthy and robust, including acquiring additional land for conservation and recreation.

April 22 - Spectrum News 1

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

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.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.