Robert Steuteville

Robert Steuteville is editor of Public Square: A CNU Journal and senior communications adviser for the Congress for the New Urbanism.

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Article image for A hospital fully embraces urban planning Health

A hospital fully embraces urban planning

“The hospital can be a catalyst to create healthy communities in which walking, social engagement, and positive economic transformation are facilitated.”
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUL. 20, 2016
Article image for A new conversation for USDOT Transportation

A new conversation for USDOT

The "community listening chart" from Nashville, Tennessee, outlines the discussion that is taking place around the I-40 corridor through the city. The discussion is part of US Department of Transportation's Every Place Counts workshop this week—one...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUL. 12, 2016
Article image for US has no peer in traffic death Transportation

US has no peer in traffic death

US traffic deaths are way beyond peer nations and the gap is widening, according to a report released this week from the Centers for Disease Control. Traffic deaths in the US have dropped since 2000, due to safer vehicles and declining miles driven...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUL. 8, 2016
Article image for A dead mall becomes a downtown for a sprawling suburb Design

A dead mall becomes a downtown for a sprawling suburb

Although Lakewood, Colorado, is the fifth largest city in the state, until the last decade the city had no true downtown. Instead, the Denver suburb boasted one of the country’s largest indoor shopping malls, built in the 1960s—but by 2000, that...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 27, 2016
Article image for More walkable, more fair Equity

More walkable, more fair

Walkability leads to higher social equity, even in cities that have higher housing costs, according to research in the new report Foot Traffic Ahead. The graph above shows that cities with more office, retail, and multifamily development in walkable...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 17, 2016
Article image for ‘Walkable urban’ dominates US commercial development Finance

‘Walkable urban’ dominates US commercial development

Mixed-use, walkable commercial development is outpacing large-scale conventional suburban construction in every major metro area, according to the new report Foot Traffic Ahead: Ranking Walkable Urbanism in America’s Largest Metros, 2016. For...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 15, 2016
Article image for Better streets are worth fighting for Transportation

Better streets are worth fighting for

Sadik-Khan's approach is both radical and practical. Instead of relying on traffic "models" that are rarely tested against reality, she made changes with temporary materials that could be reversed if the benefits failed to materialize.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 14, 2016
Article image for Detroit's hope in neighborhood revival Equity

Detroit's hope in neighborhood revival

Detroit wrote the history of the motor vehicle age in America, and Detroit is one of the most automobile-oriented cities in America. Yet less than 50 percent of the adults in Detroit own a car. That fact says a lot about how Detroit has failed, and...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 10, 2016
Article image for A great city is a just city

A great city is a just city

The most successful new urbanist politician ever gave CNU attendees a role model for how to transform cities, how to care about character and beauty, and why urbanism is most important for those with the least money and privilege. Joe Riley was the...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 9, 2016
Article image for The first suburban retrofit gets a neighborhood Design

The first suburban retrofit gets a neighborhood

After two decades, Mashpee Commons is moving forward with 300-plus residential units, more shops, and civic spaces with support from the regional planning authority.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 7, 2016
Article image for Choice and the ‘sprawl tax’ Equity

Choice and the ‘sprawl tax’

Daniel Hertz at City Observatory introduced what he called the “Sprawl Tax” last week—defined as the cost associated with excess commuting distance for the top 50 metro areas. This distance adds real costs for gas, depreciation, and wear and tear on...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 6, 2016
Article image for The McMansion is not a town Sustainability

The McMansion is not a town

How many gables does this house have? I lost count at 11. The fake dormers and complicated roof line are meant to make up for the lack of variety in this Maryland exurb. Every house nearby has a similarly expansive lawn that is rarely used. Need to...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEJUN. 3, 2016
Article image for CNU group seeks to Build a Better Burb Design

CNU group seeks to Build a Better Burb

The Build a Better Burb Sprawl Retrofit Council met in Miami to explore opportunities for promoting land-use diversity and transportation choice in the suburbs—with particular focus on the needs of smaller suburbs with less robust markets. A follow–...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 26, 2016
Article image for Appreciating small-scale New Urbanism Design

Appreciating small-scale New Urbanism

For those who are concerned that too many big developers dominate urban revitalization, the Naked Philly blog is an antidote.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 25, 2016
Article image for New Urbanism's family values Equity

New Urbanism's family values

Joel Kotkin charges urbanists with being anti-family—but he couldn't be more wrong.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 23, 2016
Article image for Playing field tilted against cities Equity

Playing field tilted against cities

"The public policy environment in Pennsylvania, and in most places in the United States, is absolutely, positively hostile to cities," said Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf. Wolf said, for example, that the costs of water, sewer, and electric networks...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 15, 2016
Article image for Poverty is a bigger problem than gentrification Equity

Poverty is a bigger problem than gentrification

An infographic from City Observatory makes the case for why concentrated poverty impacts more people in US cities.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 13, 2016
Article image for Comeback city: CNU in Detroit Equity

Comeback city: CNU in Detroit

The Transforming City is the theme of this year’s Congress—and it’s the most inspiring CNU storyline that I can remember.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 11, 2016
Article image for Florida embraces Complete Streets, a colossal task Transportation

Florida embraces Complete Streets, a colossal task

A comprehensive implementation guide was written to retool the machinery behind Florida's deadly streets.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 10, 2016
Article image for The Transect: A diagram of diversity Design

The Transect: A diagram of diversity

The inspiration for this iconic drawing was a walk from the beach over the dunes and into the scrub woodlands in the early days of Seaside, Florida. Douglas Duany, landscape architect, explained the natural transect to architect Andres Duany, who...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 6, 2016
Article image for An ambitious plan to rebuild a neighborhood Equity

An ambitious plan to rebuild a neighborhood

Housing authority begins construction on phase one of 1,200 residences and 400,000 square feet of retail and replacement of two schools in North Philadelphia.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 4, 2016
Article image for The Flower City blooms again Design

The Flower City blooms again

As growing legions of Americans look for urban places, many will be drawn to more affordable mid-sized cities like Rochester, NY.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAY. 2, 2016
Article image for Gold in the streets of Michigan Transportation

Gold in the streets of Michigan

CNU recently completed four Legacy Charrettes in advance of CNU 24 in Detroit. On Monday through Thursday we published articles on the fascinating plans by top new urbanists. Two of the charrettes focused on city neighborhoods and other two focused...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 29, 2016
Article image for A tail of woe Transportation

A tail of woe

Heinrich Kley was a German illustrator active in the early 20th Century who was noted for darkly humorous pen-and-ink drawings. He sometimes focused on the conflicts of new technologies—such as motor vehicles competing for space on city streets with...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 29, 2016
Article image for For Detroit artery, the future is urban Transportation

For Detroit artery, the future is urban

CNU Legacy Charrette team boosts confidence in a neighborhood with a languishing commercial corridor.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 28, 2016
Article image for Downtown Pontiac: 'Nothing looks impossible' Design

Downtown Pontiac: 'Nothing looks impossible'

The Legacy Charrette plan includes both incremental steps to kick-start economic and cultural activity and long-term visions.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 27, 2016
Article image for Spurring investment in an immigrant neighborhood Equity

Spurring investment in an immigrant neighborhood

Southwest Detroit is the kind of neighborhood that few people talk about outside of the Motor City. The community is not one of those that are vacant and dilapidated—the subject of "ruin porn" photos on the web. It's also not booming with...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 26, 2016
Article image for A main street makeover for a first-ring suburb Design

A main street makeover for a first-ring suburb

A CNU charrette led by Moule & Polyzoides, Architects and Urbanists, focused on how to transform a two-mile stretch of the John R Road that traverses Hazel Park, Michigan. The goal is to promote development of a walkable downtown where none...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 25, 2016
Article image for Ten towns that changed America

Ten towns that changed America

PBS explores urban planning and the New Urbanism.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 19, 2016
Article image for New York State emerges as freeway teardown leader Transportation

New York State emerges as freeway teardown leader

All of a sudden, New York State is the nation’s leader in urban freeway removal, as reported by Streetsblog. Andrew Cuomo is on a bit of a roll when it comes to urban planning and city-based economic development. Cuomo and his administration have...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 18, 2016
Article image for Suburban office park must adapt or die Design

Suburban office park must adapt or die

High vacancy rates and little reason to visit outside of 9 to 5 contrasts with the current success of central business districts. How can office parks be transformed?
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 15, 2016
Article image for How green is this Apple? Sustainability

How green is this Apple?

I've been a dedicated user of Apple products for 20 years—but Tim Cook's assertion that Apple's new headquarters will be the "greenest building on the planet" is absurd. To get a sense of scale of Apple's new Cupertino campus, Josh Arcurio...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 15, 2016
Article image for Ten more songs for urbanists

Ten more songs for urbanists

When I posted a list of ten songs for urbanists in February, many people posted alternative suggestions—so many that I nearly had enough for another list. I curated those suggestions and added a few more. Enjoy! Where Do the Children Play? Cat...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 13, 2016
Article image for Mixed-use density in a suburban center Design

Mixed-use density in a suburban center

Building density that supports walkable urban centers is a key strategy of new urbanists—but this goal is challenging in already built-out suburbs. Existing conditions, space constraints, zoning restrictions, and long approval processes often...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 11, 2016
Article image for Yes, small-scale development can survive gentrification

Yes, small-scale development can survive gentrification

Oak Cliff, Dallas, went through the typical waves of gentrification. The creative types began to move in during the 1990s, followed by middle class families and young professionals, followed by the current wave of developers. Attached is a photo...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 8, 2016
Article image for A human-centered architecture for our time Design

A human-centered architecture for our time

In The Humanists Versus the Reactionary Avant Garde, Charles Siegel illuminates the question of what progressive, contemporary architecture truly means.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 7, 2016
Article image for A code transforms a commercial strip corridor Design

A code transforms a commercial strip corridor

First built over 200 years ago as a toll road connecting Washington, D.C. to greater Virginia, the Columbia Pike now serves as a direct route to the Pentagon and other capital landmarks. Until recently, this Arlington, Virginia thoroughfare was an...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEAPR. 6, 2016
Article image for A mixed-use center for town and gown Design

A mixed-use center for town and gown

The redevelopment of a suburban commercial strip area across from UConn has made Mansfield, Connecticut, a better place.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAR. 22, 2016
Article image for LA's parking crater

LA's parking crater

A recent study in the Journal of the American Planning Association estimates there are 18.6 million parking spots in Los Angeles County, which would cover an area 16 miles in diameter if combined in a single 200-square-mile parking lot. Even spread...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAR. 18, 2016
Article image for Ten reasons for a new American Dream Design

Ten reasons for a new American Dream

A older American Dream, that of town, neighborhood, and city living, was submerged by the suburban American Dream—which controlled the regulations, finance, and investment after World War II.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAR. 14, 2016
Article image for The four phases of New Urbanism Design

The four phases of New Urbanism

As revitalization of cities moves forward, urbanists are partway through a multiphase process that is changing America.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAR. 10, 2016
Article image for A small Michigan city embraces walkable urbanism Design

A small Michigan city embraces walkable urbanism

Detroit has captivated the nation in its decline, bankruptcy, and booming downtown rebirth, but there is more to urbanism in Southeastern Michigan than the Motor City.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAR. 7, 2016
Article image for The story of walking in US cities in one graph Transportation

The story of walking in US cities in one graph

This graph, from the 2016 Bicycling & Walking Benchmarking Report, released two days ago, tells you most of what you need to know about walking in US cities. The best 10 cities identified in this graph, where walking is frequent and safe, all...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEMAR. 4, 2016
Article image for Council to study building a 'better burb' Design

Council to study building a 'better burb'

CNU is reviving a tradition of intimate discussions with top experts next month in Miami with the Build a Better Burb Sprawl Retrofit Council.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 26, 2016
Article image for Sprawl madness Transportation

Sprawl madness

These two suburban houses near Orlando, Florida, are about 60 feet apart, but to borrow a cup of sugar without trespassing requires a 7.1-mile trip by car—or a two-and-a-half-hour trek on foot (five hours round trip). A similar image was originally...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 26, 2016
Article image for Historic arcade houses young professionals Equity

Historic arcade houses young professionals

One of the nation's most beautiful historic shopping arcades was restored into affordable micro-lofts and small shops in Providence.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 24, 2016
Article image for The new science of street design

The new science of street design

If transportation officials embrace a new approach backed by science, safe and effective mobility no longer need conflict with the multidimensional role of streets as public spaces and with people’s varied modes of travel.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 23, 2016
Article image for Map shows how cities and towns can fight climate change Sustainability

Map shows how cities and towns can fight climate change

The impact of the neighborhood on many sources of climate emissions is clearly visible in this University of California research.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 22, 2016
Article image for Ten songs for urbanists

Ten songs for urbanists

I offer a personal selection of music on topics that urbanists care about—I hope you enjoy it.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 16, 2016
Article image for A diverse new neighborhood in the city Equity

A diverse new neighborhood in the city

A beloved amusement park closed in Denver, CO—luckily, Highlands Garden Village was built in its place.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 15, 2016
Article image for Shared space intersections mean less delay Transportation

Shared space intersections mean less delay

Mingling of people and cars at slow speeds is efficient and pedestrian-friendly, according to a University of Connecticut study.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 10, 2016
Article image for The missing middle of our social lives Health

The missing middle of our social lives

The social village has withered in the US, according to The Vanishing Neighbor: The Transformation of American Community, by Marc Dunkelman. How do we restore it?
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 8, 2016
Article image for Welcome to Public Square: A CNU Journal

Welcome to Public Square: A CNU Journal

Today marks the launch of CNU’s latest effort, an online journal to illuminate and cultivate best practices in urbanism in the US and beyond.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2016
Article image for Home design: The community is key Design

Home design: The community is key

Good news for architects and urbanists.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2016
Design

Jane Jacobs: Four ways to improve cities and towns

Influential words from the most influential writer on urban planning in modern times
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2016
Article image for Grass roots culture creates community Equity

Grass roots culture creates community

For one warm fall Sunday afternoon, “the most diverse musical lineup of any festival in Georgia” transformed a neighborhood in Decatur, an inner-ring suburb of Atlanta.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2016
Article image for The little house that could Design

The little house that could

When Hurricane Katrina struck in August 2005, aid for the region arrived in all shapes and sizes from across the US.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2016
Article image for The economic value of a unique place Finance

The economic value of a unique place

How many times have you heard someone say, dismissively, "Oh, that's just aesthetics," or, defensively, "It's not just aesthetics" to signal that a "real" issue is involved, usually economics. Hogwash, says Urban Land Institute scholar Ed McMahon....
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2016
Article image for Small-scale developers movement gains steam Design

Small-scale developers movement gains steam

A small developer and builders group associated with CNU is gathering momentum and has the potential to fill a gap in the industry. Resources are available for big urban developers and sprawl builders, but few educational materials and support...
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2016
Article image for What traffic engineers can learn from doctors Transportation

What traffic engineers can learn from doctors

Traffic engineers as a group have been much slower to recognize their erroneous techniques and replace them with less damaging practices.
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEDEC. 1, 2015
Article image for As traffic deaths rise, blame engineering dogma Transportation

As traffic deaths rise, blame engineering dogma

US traffic deaths are rising again—fatalities jumped 8.1 percent in the first half of 2015
ROBERT STEUTEVILLEFEB. 3, 2015