April 10, 2007 Philadelphia forum shows urban planning not priority in mayor's race
By Inga Saffron , Inquirer Architecture Critic
This was supposed to be the year in which urban planning took center stage as an issue in Philadelphia politics, along with crime and schools. But if last night's mayoral forum on urban design was any indication, the subject is still stuck with a bit role in the campaign.
Redwood City's Free-Market Parking Meters
By Laurence Aurbach, 3 Apr 2007
At first glance the notion of free-market parking meters seems impossibly arcane. But as Donald Shoup pointed out in a recent NY Times editorial, "cruising for curb parking generates about 30 percent of the traffic in central business districts." Shoup studied Westwood Village, next to the UCLA campus, and found that drivers searching for curb parking created 950,000 excess vehicle miles of travel per year. That's equivalent to 38 trips around the earth, taking place in just one retail district in L.A.
"Sanford seeks sprawl control."
That's the headline in a recent issue of the Columbia (SC) State (http://www.thestate.com/154/story/19190.html). Mark Sanford, the state's impeccably conservative governor, was "omnipresent" at a conference on sprawl, moderated by Andres Duany. It isn't quite clear what Sanford accurately plans to do about sprawl- but clearly, the issue is on his priority list.
Sure, hybrid cars and other energy-efficient vehicles are part of the solution to global warming and oil dependency, but how much people drive is as important as what people drive.
On March 1, 2007, CNU hosted an Affordable Housing Organizing Meeting to begin the conversation on our specific role in the provision of quality diverse housing, and to establish clear, measurable objectives and ways in which this Initiative can begin to advance them.
Recent news has Charleston "building" another county park near bees ferry West Ashley. Mayor Joe is fulfilling his promise of a green belt around Charleston County. If all goes well Daniel Island will be adding a additional state park at the proposed SPA shipping terminal site.
The cul-de-sac is losing favor with most planners and many homeowners, minus sprawl-lovin’ Southern California, according to a recent L.A. Times article. After decades hearing of trapped teenagers and families forced to drive everywhere to access basic services, communities nationwide are seeking alternatives. A neighborhood in Irvine California is transforming cul-de-sac woes by simply adding bridges and paths that link otherwise isolated housing tracts to neighboring schools, shopping centers, and churches. Retrofitting the suburbs can start with simple steps.
Don Shoup's speech at CNUXIII in Pasadena kicked off a wave of interest here in Chicago, and today he's in the NY Times opinion column. If this interests you, don't miss the parking session at CNU XV in Philadelphia with Neal Payton of Torti Gallas, Roamy Valera of Timothy Haahs Associates and Patrick Siegman of Nelson/Nygaard. Click here here for the latest information.
New urbanism event being held in Austin
Austin Business Journal
11:17 AM CDT Tuesday, March 27, 2007
Austin's efforts to create a denser and more active urban core have helped
it land a major conference that will draw an estimated 2,000 attendees next
A new Gfk Roper study shows Americans developing especially positive attitudes toward New Urbanism and neighborhoods where people live near each other (New Urbanism phrased another way).
Judging from a report in the Denver Post, this study is a keeper. Here are a few quotes: