This weekend, friends, family, colleagues and admirers got together to celebrate the life, and mourn the death, of a man many consider to be the most talented architect Canada has ever produced. Frank Gehry may have been born in Canada, but Arthur Erickson began, remained and died a great Canadian. He was also one of the World's architectural greats, and a "citizen of the World".
I live in Hoboken, New Jersey. It is a small (~50k residents), very densely populated city (fourth in the country), with high pedestrian volumes and some hairy traffic issues in certain areas. With heavy rail, light rail, subway, bus, ferry, taxi, bicycle, pedestrian, and para-transit all converging at Hoboken Terminal, it is also home to perhaps the richest intermodal transportation facility in the world (in terms of modes). It is often characterized as feeling European, or like Brooklyn, take your pick. Recently, we have been successful in implementing a nascent bicycle plan that includes bike lanes striped along the length of two north/south avenues in the heart of the city. Cross streets are next with “sharrows" since these streets are too narrow for exclusive
Reporting from CNU 17 in Denver, where the thundercracks shook the Sheraton at various points throughout the day. Somehow though I've managed to be outside only when the sun is out.
The conference bags handed out to the attendees of the 2007 National Planning conference in Philadelphia had four words printed on one side: value, choice, engagement, community. The words echo the long mission statement of the American Planning Association, evidence of what I described last year as the pragmatic position of the profession that refrains from making a larger argument about the form of the city. Here's a taste:
"Our collaborative efforts will continue to result in great success for APA and the vital communities we strive to support, and APA members will continue to help create communities of lasting value. We value choice and community engagement, diversity, inclusion and social equity."
Since then, a new program from the organization and other evidence may suggest a subtle shift in professional values now underway.