Wednesday, July 31, 2013

From TED Blog —The Making of the TED2014 Theatre: an Early View

The TED2014 theater will be something audacious: a theater designed specifically for talks.

TED stages in the past have had thrusts and three-quarter rounds, but have largely been determined by what existed in the venue. For TED2014, however, a temporary, pop-up theater designed by longtime TEDster Architect and Set Designer David Rockwell. The theater will be located inside the Vancouver Convention Centre, with sweeping views of the bay and the North Shore Mountains, and will be geared toward personal connection. Read more: The making of the TED2014 theater: an early view | TED Blog David Rockwell chats with Charlie Rose: 

From SUNN Vancouver Historic Quartiers —Shopping List for the
New Neighbourhood Plan

LEWIS VILLEGAS Here is a primer for what to look for in the new neighbourhood plan for the Downtown Eastide the place we dubbed Vancouver’s Historic Quartiers.
Human-scale urbanism  Small is Beautiful. Better to build 100 sites with 4 units each, than one site with 400 units. From the point of view of social capital and profits from re-development, historic neighbourhoods are better served by having many small interventions rather than just a few big ones. Towers don’t work everywhere, and they are a bad fit in historic districts. Read more: Shopping List for the New Neighbourhood Plan | SUNN Vancouver Historic Quartiers

Sunday, July 28, 2013

From Grist — Who Parked in my Spot?!: Neighbors, Cars, and “Your” Curb Space

1-Parking-mapSoon after advertising executive Necia Dallas moved into a house in Portland, Ore., she found on her door a detailed, hand-drawn map specifying the curb spots where each resident was permitted to park. The map, left by an anonymous neighbor, indicated that Necia was welcome to park in front of her own house but that it was, “Optional! Because of your driveway. ” Jon Stahl of Seattle also got a parking map as a house-warming gift (pictured above). Read more: Who parked in my spot?!: Neighbors, cars, and “your” curb space | Grist

Strong Towns' Chuck Marohn on Streetfilms

Strong Towns' Chuck Marohn: Why Suburban Growth Is a Ponzi Scheme
from Streetfilms on VimeoStrong Towns on Streetfilms

Saturday, July 27, 2013

From The Atlantic Cities
Streets Can Be Public Spaces Too

  • KAID BENFIELD As I wrote last fall, to move more deliberately toward anything resembling a sustainable future, we need to use land more efficiently, building more compactly, with higher densities of homes and businesses per acre than we built, on average, in the late 20th century. We particularly must do this in two circumstances: by retrofitting or "repairing" what are now low-density suburbs with aging commercial buildings going out of service, and by reinvesting and rebuilding in disinvested parts of central cities and older towns and suburbs. While I am on record as saying that we don’t necessarily need high densities to achieve these improvements, we certainly need to do much, much better than sprawl.Streets Can Be Public Spaces Too - Kaid Benfield - The Atlantic Cities
  • From Slate Magazine
    Free Parking Isn’t Free

    Why so much parking smack-dab in the middle of Chicago’s Loop, a walkable area that’s well-served by heavy-rail transit and many buses? The culprit is a regulatory scourge so ubiquitous as to be nearly invisible: regulatory parking mandates that tax the poor to subsidize the rich while damaging the environment and the broader economy.

    Rules requiring that new buildings come with parking spaces attached are so omnipresent that their absence induces confusion. A recent Boston Globe article by Casey Ross about local parking regulation was headlined “City Wants a Cutback on New Parking” and described city officials as “deliberately discouraging construction of new spaces.” What’s actually happening, as Ross’ reporting makes clear, is that officials are allowing the construction of buildings with a lower ratio of dwellings to parking spaces than previously required. Specifically, “in most cases, officials are allowing the ratio to slip to 0.75 spaces per residence,” rather than the one or two spaces that had been the previous rule. Read more: Free parking isn’t free: Parking mandates hurt America’s cities. - Slate Magazine

    Friday, July 26, 2013

    From Guardian Social Enterprise Network — Communities Can Rescue their Local Amenities the Co-Operative Way

    Co-operatives are viable ways of saving local amenities: This has worked and does work. No community-owned shop or pub closed in 2012. They're incredibly resilient.

    Co-operatives are able to operate where others cannot: Each community shop and co-operative pub exists where other forms have failed. Co-operatives also operate where the private and public sectors are unwilling to.

    Rural communities are often faced with the situation where they have to act or the service is lost: This hasn't always been the case for urban communities but is certainly on the increase. Read more: 'Communities can rescue their local amenities the co-operative way' | Guardian Social Enterprise Network

    Thursday, July 25, 2013

    SFU Community
    Economic Development Webinar

    Saturday, July 20, 2013

    Wednesday, July 17, 2013

    Sunday, July 14, 2013

    Saturday, July 13, 2013

    Thursday, July 11, 2013

    From The Atlantic Cities — Is Being Able to Walk Around Your City a Right?

    The ability to walk from one place to another is one of humanity’s defining characteristics. Using our two feet to carry us about our business is one of the basic functions that our species was designed to fulfill.

    And yet in many parts of the world, pedestrians have become so marginalized that exercising performing this fundamental human operation has become life-threatening.

    The situation is bad enough in developed countries such as the United States, where elaborate auto infrastructure has systematically displaced and excluded pedestrians and where nearly every citizen owns a car.

    But in countries of the global South, such as India, the conditions for people on foot can be even more dire. To call attention to the appalling situation faced by pedestrians in the city of Chennai, the newspaper The Hindu has launched a campaign called “Right to Walk,” which aims to "reclaim our city’s footpaths" and "goad local officials to act." Read more: Is Being Able to Walk Around Your City a Right?

    Wednesday, July 10, 2013

    Project for Public Spaces VP Ethan Kent's Address to University of Oklahoma's
    2013 Placemaking Conference

    Click here to watch Ethan's lecture from OU Institute for Quality Communities' 2013 Placemaking Conference this past spring:

    Infuse Conference Vancouver July 6-9

    Monday, July 8, 2013

    Saturday, July 6, 2013

    From Assemble Papers — @citiesforpeople:
    Jan Gehl Melbourne Walkabout

    Swanston streetscape. Busier than Regent street London. Photo courtesy Avlxyz (CC-license via Flickr).
    Jan Gehl, renowned Danish architect, urban design consultant and champion of the human scale, is a great believer in walking. “There is more to walking than walking”, he says, a point which Mitra Anderson-Oliver has cause to reflect on over the two days spent pursuing Jan on foot during his trip to Melbourne for an international study tour, during the hottest autumn week in Victoria’s history. Read more: Cities for people: Jan Gehl | Assemble Papers