CNU Salons

The Myth of Overcrowding

Last week, I had a conversation with a faculty colleague about densification in Manhattan.  He said he visited Philadelphia, and he liked Philadelphia better because it wasn't so crowded.  

But I responded that Manhattan wasn't as crowded as he thought it was.  To be sure, there are a few places in Manhattan (especially at certain times) that are very crowded indeed- in particular, the blocks closest to Penn Station.  When I get off a train and get into the station during rush hour, I am met by the New York stereotype- a sea of people.

The Definition Of "Peak Oil" And What This Means For The US

The term "Peak Oil" refers to a "peak" in oil production.  Oil is a finite resource, meaning that there is a limited supply.  The oil that is currently being drilled to and pumped out of the Earth's crust and mantle in locations all over the Earth is not going to come endlessly out of the ground continuously for ever and ever, the end.  This seems to be the fairytale that most people that work in and profit from the oil industry, as well as people that use this resource, believe.

How A Traditional Agricultural City Functions: The Case Of San Isidro, Costa Rica

If you're one of those that is interested in the agricultural New Urbanist community concept, then you might want to check out the city of San Isidro, Costa Rica.  San Isidro is a city with a population of around 35,000.  It lies nestled in a valley surrounded on all sides by beautiful mountains located in the Talamanca Mountain range, east of the Pacific coast of southwest Costa Rica.

How Changing/Updating Existing Zoning Laws Could Help Save the Planet

Prior to and during the Industrial Revolution of the 17 and 1800s, cities in the developed world such as London and New York City had become extremely dirty and polluted places to live.  With that many people packed that densely into such a small area, many serious issues arose, especially with sewage and waste disposal.  Many businesses of the day such as tanneries and butchers would throw the carcasses of dead animals into the alley ways behind the businesses, while people resided in apartments above those businesses.

More Density for Bigger Cities

I recently have noticed lots of comments in blogs and listservs on ideal densities.  But the ideal density for a city or a neighborhood (if there is such a thing) depends on context.
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Why?  The smaller the city, the less density you need for walkability.

HIGHWAYS TO BOULEVARDS BLOG: Interview with Scott Ogilvie, Saint Louis

This post is a part of CNU’s new Highways to Boulevards Blog series, which features interview summaries and insights from some of the best minds at the frontline of our Highways to Boulevards Initiative.