CNU Salons

Property vs. Sales Taxes

The first CNU 21 speech I went to was by attorney Craig Galli, who briefly outlined the history of Salt Lake City.  He pointed out that one of the region's problems was the dependence of local cities on sales taxes; to attract tax revenue, local governments need to attract sales-generating retailers.  As a result, the region became oversupplied with big box stores, some of which are now vacant due to competition from other big box stores.

URBANISM+2030: Interview with Erin Christensen

CNU’s LeRoy Taylor recently interviewed Erin Christensen, Associate Principal at Mithun to discuss the new joint initiative between CNU and Architecture 2030. Erin will host an Open Source session on URBANISM+2030 this week at CNU 21 (Thursday, May 30 after the morning plenary).

What The Height Limits Debate Is Really About

It seems to me that the debate among new urbanist/smart growth types about height limits for office buildings* is really about one question: if businesses can't find enough office space in a low-rise business district, will they:

1.  move a few blocks away, thus improving a neighborhood adjacent to downtown?

2.  move to a suburb with more lenient height restrictions or cheaper land?

This story is strong, but anecdotal, evidence for view 2. 


Suburban Poverty? So What?

Because of the release of a new book about the growth of poverty in the suburbs,  there has been all sorts of chatter on Twitter and the urbanist blogosphere about the growth of suburban poverty.  Obviously, poverty anywhere is not a good thing.  But as long as there is poverty, is it such a terrible thing that some poor people now live in suburbs?

Speed Bumps Are Not All Bad

I have generally been pretty skeptical of speed bumps (also known as "speed humps"); they can be harmful to cars, but don't do as much to calm traffic as some other techniques.