Yesterday's New York Times contained an article about the latest attempt to reform Atlanta's public schools: an eleven-story high school costing about four times as much as the average Southern high school. The city plans to move North Atlanta High, one of the city's more racially diverse high schools, from its existing site in quasi-suburban Buckhead to a larger building at the edge of town.
There's a new paperback novel co-authored by Glen Beck, entitled AGENDA 21. It's a dystropian tale of a future that, according to Mr. Beck and his co-author is about to descend upon us!!! In the story, life is so depressing that Ayn Rand's ANTHEM the title piece from her THE ANTI-INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION are cheerful prophecied of better days ahead! In the book's afterword, two of Agenda 21's main points are 1) moving people out of suburbs into urban locations. 2)Sustainable development and smart growth! Heavens!
The introduction of the Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) certification program into the building and real estate market allowed environmentalists to breathe a sigh of relief. Buildings, the leading producer of GHGs, finally had a trendy and very marketable adaptation technique to combat global warming. In recent years, the rating system has made monumental gains in popularity in both the public and private sector.
In the most recent City Journal, Joel Kotkin wrote an article discussing cities' alleged loss of children, and arguing that cities would be more successful in retaining children if only they could be more like low-density suburbs.
One common "story" about the evolution of American cities is that suburban poverty is growing because people are being driven out of high-priced cities into suburbs. One possible implication of this argument is that cities need to be kept poor and stagnant so that poor people can afford them.
Leigh Gallagher's new book The End of the Suburbs is getting amazing media attention this week, and while Joe Scarborough or Mara Schiavocampo don't see "new urbanism" on their teleprompter, a new urbanist community appears on screen. That community is Libertyville, Illinois, developed by StreetScape Development, LLC.
The Finger Lakes Institute based at Hobart & William Smith Colleges, has created a community design center, dubbed the FLI-CDC, which strives to provide Finger Lakes communities with innovative, creative, and sustainable design solutions that improve the built environment and quality of life, while protecting the natural environment. Support for the FLI-CDC has been generously provided by the Isabel Foundation.
Sprawl supporters occasionally argue that sprawl is less crime-ridden than walkable urbanism. But this argument seems to be contradicted by the reality of citywide crime rates: New York, our country's most transit-friendly city, is also one of its safest.
CNU Illinois and the Congress for the New Urbanism joined a coalition of 15 regional organizations to release a civic platform for the reconstruction of North Lake Shore Drive. The coalition calls for a bold vision to better meet the needs of everyone who uses the lakefront. The platform is based on seven principles and includes a host of recommendations for the Illinois Department of Transportation and Chicago Department of Transportation as they embark on a planning study for the reconstruction of North Lake Shore Drive from Grand to Hollywood avenues.