CNU Salons

Not A "War on Suburbia" Election

According to Joel Kotkin, this month's elections were really about the "progressives' war on suburbia." According to Kotkin, the Democrats lost because they are "aggressively anti-suburban." Since I didn't vote for President Obama, I leave it to his supporters to defend him.

Transit Riding: Its NOT All About New York

Commentators who seek to minimize the importance of recent growth in public transit ridership argue that this increase is predominantly a result of New York's rising ridership. There is a grain of truth to this argument: New York is so big that rising ridership in that city alone can affect national ridership trends. On the other hand, New York is hardly the only city experiencing rising ridership.

One (Or Maybe Two) Cheers for Cincinnati

A recent article in New Geography points out that some of his friends who feel priced out of San Francisco have moved to Rust Belt cities like Cincinnati.  Given all the wonderful historic neighborhoods of Cincinnati or Kansas City or similar cities, why would anyone live in New York or San Francisco instead?

The Attack on Airbnb

The room-sharing service Airbnb has become controversial in high-cost cities like San Francisco and New York, in part because of concerns about affordable housing. In fact, U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein has recently written an op-ed attacking Airbnb. (In the interests of full disclosure, I note that both I and the Senator have financial axes to grind: I am an Airbnb customer, and Sen.

Announcement: new paper on smart growth and government regulation

I recently coauthored a paper on government regulations designed to promote smart growth and green building (published by the Mercatus Institute).   The paper examines the prevalence of minimum density requirements, maximum parking requirements, and green building-related regulations. 

We conclude that:

*Minimum density requirements are quite rare.  Only two of twenty-four cities surveyed only two have such regulations.

Americans are more multimodal than some might think

Because most Americans drive to work on any given day, one might think that they don't use any other mode of transportation, ever.  But a recent review of federal transportation surveys shows otherwise.   In fact, 65 percent of American commuters take at least one non-car trip per week, and 48 percent take three or more.

Announcing....

I am happy to announce the birth of my new site, Auto-Free in Kansas City.  The purpose of this site is to help readers learn about Kansas City's neighborhoods and how to navigate them through public transit.   The site links to my Kansas City photos, as well as to my "Auto-Free in...." websites I created for some other cities I have lived in (Cleveland, Buffalo, Jacksonville, Atlanta- though I note that these statistics have not been updated in years, so their bus route data is no doubt a bit outdated). 

Street sense

I always love using this picture when teaching urban desing and transportation and the means by which to avoid grid lock.

cheers

Brian Killin@Toronto

Is the Creative Class Really Taking Over Cities? Verdict: Not Proven

In today's Washington Post, Emily Badger uses a set of maps to prove her claim that an affluent "creative class" is taking over urban cores, and as a result  "service and working-class residents are effectively left with the least desirable parts of town, the longest commutes and the fewest amenities. " But her maps don't seem to support her point.

Are Suburbanites Happier?