CNU Salons

Sustainability and New Urbanism in the Third World

A recent article on WorldChanging.com brought up the subject of sustainable planning and building in third world regions. The article specifically discusses the October 15 8.0 earthquake in the Ica region of Central Andean Peru. The city of Pisco near the epicenter has reportedly lost 80 percent of its housing.

Adaptability of Seattle Commuters: Evidence That Alaskan Way Viaduct Can Go

The recent closure of lanes on Interstate 5 in Seattle was, according to many media outlets, supposed to create commuting nightmares for Seattleites. But as half of 120,000 commuters have sought alternatives to driving, traffic has actually lessened and commuting has been rather smooth in Seattle. Though Seattle is often seen as a car-oriented city, its residents have transit alternatives -- whether they be ride-sharing, water taxis, or buses -- that enable them to adapt to times of infrasturacture rehabilitation. This current situation shows that Seattle can cope without the Alaskan Way Viaduct -- the elevated freeway that segregates downtown from the waterfront. The Seattle Post-Intelliger covers this story of adaptability with a news story and an Op-Ed piece:

John Norquist's Letter to Editor (Chicago Tribune) on Highway Maintenance

In "Bad transportation policy, at a price," Chicago Tribune columnist Steve Chapman appropriately bemoans the federal funding of highway expansion over maintenance.

Federal funding favors spectacular expansion projects with attendant ribbon cuttings over routine inspection and maintenance that can help avoid tragedies like the Minneapolis bridge collapse.

Pittsburgh Planning Two Prominent Green Developments

In the same vein as Portland and Denver, Pittsburgh is on its way to becoming an energy efficient city centered around green urbanism. This

Two Years Later: Displaced Gulf Coast Residents 'Stuck and Suicidal'

The controversial aftermath of hurricane Katrina has been widely documented - a delayed response from FEMA and charges of racism against the government from affected locals. Two years later many displaced citizens are forced to live in FEMA trailers that offer little comfort or sense of community.

Getting riverfront access right

I just visited one of Tampa's more walkable neighborhoods, Hyde Park. Like Jacksonville's Riverside, Hyde Park is a long walk from downtown, is a well-off 1920s streetcar suburb, and borders a body of water (in this case, Tampa Bay).

Street Connectivity and Crash Safety

This essay is the first attempt (to the best of my knowledge) to mount a comprehensive counterargument to intersection spacing standards on the grounds of crash safety. Comments and feedback are requested.

Interview with Ellen Dunham-Jones

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution just ran an interview with CNU Board Member and Georgia Tech Architecture Program Director Ellen Dunham-Jones.

New Urbanism Growing in St. Louis Region

Though it took some time to get going, New Urbanist projects in the sprawling metropolitan St. Louis are slowly densifying the area and lessening automobile-dependence. A St.

Anthony Flint on Massachusetts' "Fix-It-First" Infrastructure Policy

Anthony Flint, of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, has an interesting < a href="http://anthonyflint.net/blog/">blog worth checking out. He is a former writer for the Boston Globe and author of the book "This Land: The Battle Over Sprawl and the Future of America." In light of the Minneapolis bridge collapse, he discusses Massachusetts' philosophy on urban infrastructure projects.