Planning

How To Create A "Vertical Suburb"

At CNU, Richard Florida quipped that high-rises were "vertical suburbs".  At the time, I couldn't quite figure out what he was trying to say. ... read more »

a smaller deal than you think

There's been a lot of hubbub about the Bloomberg Administration's proposal to make city-owned land available for 275-square-foot apartments.  The city proposes to allow developers to build these "micro-units" and rent them for $2000 a unit.  If you read some of the comments in the press, y... read more »

Does statewide planning matter very much?

When California passed SB 375 (a law requiring local planners to create strategies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions) environmentalists were enthuasiastic, while pro-sprawl commentators used hyperbolic rhetoric to attack the law.  ... read more »

Why front lawns?

In a recent post on Planetizen's group blog, Todd Litman discusses the pros and cons (mostly cons) of lawns.   ... read more »

Mayberry: Is Small Town America a Myth?

It's true that the American icon of Mayberry was well before my time, but as a native North Carolinian it certainly has been indoctrinated into my personal culture and maybe even identity. Fictional Mayberry, North Carolina was in almost every American's living room for nearly a decade, and many mor... read more »

Why the rent is too high

Today I began my apartment search, looking at an apartment in the neighborhood next to mine (a neighborhood less high-income than Forest Hills, Queens, where I now live).  In addition to being in a cheaper area than mine, the building is a fairly long walk to the subway (about 15 minutes, farth... read more »

Building Smarter Cities…In the Year 2060

When my colleague put an article on my desk today with the subtitle, “Climate change will drive people to urban areas. How will urban planners accommodate them all?” it caught my attention, not because of the topic, but because of the double spread striking image of the “flat tower” proposed... read more »

Semantics: Redevelopment vs. Regeneration

I received my urban design and planning education in England, which sometimes leads to little, yet awkward, misunderstandings. It has been a slight challenge to get comfortable in the drastic differences between the two planning systems, but mostly I have made peace with the translations. Howeve... read more »

From One Municipality to Another...

In my former life as a lawprof and private consultant focused on New Urbanism, I remember many trips to many different cities where I shared my best advice on how to overcome the challenges of sprawl development.  During every one of those seminars, speeches, and the like, I offered what I thou... read more »