Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Saturday, December 28, 2013

From Duany Plater-Zyberk & Company — The Sprawl Repair Initiative

The Sprawl Repair initiative grew out of the lessons learned in the revitalization of existing dysfunctional or incomplete built environments, in suburban or urban locations. DPZ sees any tract of developed land, however distressed or ill-planned, as a repository of embodied energy that, rather than being discarded, should be reclaimed, re-urbanized, and transformed into a more livable, economically functional, and ecologically sound habitat. The Sprawl Repair method provides the framework and step-by-step process to do so. To read more and download the Sprawl Repair Roadmap and Sprawl Repair Toolkits Overview: Technique: Sprawl Repair

Monday, December 23, 2013

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Thursday, December 19, 2013

From Planetizen
Mythbusting: Exposing Half-Truths That Support Automobile Dependency

TODD LITMAN Some commentators recently expressed outraged that governments spend money on cycling improvements. You could call them cycling critics, because they assume that bicyclists have inferior rights to use public roads and that cycling facility investments are wasteful and unfair, or call them automobile dependency advocates because their general message is that transportation planning should focus on facilitating automobile travel with little consideration for other modes. Read more: Mythbusting: Exposing Half-Truths That Support Automobile Dependency | Planetizen: The Urban Planning, Design, and Development Network

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Monday, December 16, 2013

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Saturday, December 14, 2013

From WhatWasThere —Another
Theater That Became a Parking Lot

The Paradise Theater, which was built in the Garfield Park neighborhood of Chicago, was billed as the world’s most beautiful theater.

From RaisetheHammer.org — Toronto's Chief Planner Keesmaat Addresses
Hamilton Ont The Ambitious City Conference

Jennifer Keesmaat, Chief Planner for the City of Toronto and one of the most highly regarded planning professionals in North America, addressing The Ambitious City event in Hamilton Ontario . 
Keesmaat's first principle is that great cities design their places and streets for people, not cars. She contrasted the old paradigm of designing for cars, which simply leads to more cars, with the new paradigm of designing for people, which leads to more people.
Following from this, great cities have neighbourhoods with central main streets that provide a variety of amenities. "Places where you have multiple destinations within a five minute walk from home...give you a reason to be in public space."
To make great neighbourhoods work, people need a variety of ways to get around: walkable streets, bike lanes and good transit as well as automobile lane capacity. "If you do it right, you will encourage people to choose other ways to get around." Read more: Inspiring Talk on The Ambitious City by Toronto's Chief Planner - Raise the Hammer

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

From The Atlantic Cities — What Your
Street Grid Reveals About Your City

"It's true that Manhattan lacks the elegant squares, axial boulevards and civic monuments around which other cities designed their public spaces. But it has evolved a public realm of streets and sidewalks that creates urban theater on the grandest level. No two blocks are ever precisely the same because the grid indulges variety, building to building, street to street."
In most cities with wide streets and big blocks precious little space is allotted to pedestrians, 30 percent of a city’s area is typically dedicated to moving cars – "not counting the parking lots that push some southern cities over 50 percent. Read more: "What Your Street Grid Reveals About Your City - Sarah Goodyear - The Atlantic Cities

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Monday, December 9, 2013

From Vancouver Heritage Foundation — House Style Encyclopedia

An interactive encyclopedia of traditional house styles and their architectural components — House Style Encyclopedia | Table

Saturday, December 7, 2013

From Planetizen Courses —
Bicycle-Friendly Streets: Design Standards

Bike Friendly Streets: Design Standards present examples of how cities are redesigning their streets to not only accommodate but encourage bicycling. From Road Diets that make room for bike lanes to total street redesigns, cities are stepping up to the challenge of providing a variety of options for the bicyclists in their communities. More at: Bicycle-Friendly Streets: Design Standards | Planetizen Courses

Friday, December 6, 2013

SFU Warren Gill Lecture Series —
Toronto Chief Planner Jennifer Keesmaat

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

And in Summation and Conclusion (ahem)... My Thoughts Submitted to Nanaimo's Transportation Master Plan

Thanks to Nanaimo City Councillor George Anderson, Chair of the City of Nanaimo Transportation Advisory Committee for providing numerous opportunities to submit ideas to the Transportation Master Plan and to meet and discuss them in person.

These are the areas I will be looking to see addressed in the final Plan —

Elimination of all commercial inter-city traffic from the Island Highway and its return to its proper role as a city street in the service of the neighbourhoods it passes through. Speed limit max 30kph as it passes through neighbourhoods. A detailed, objective analysis should be completed on the economic and social impacts of this highway.

Speed limit reductions to 30kph throughout all residential areas. 50kph restricted to a few arterials, and these with narrowed lanes, HOV and bus lanes, cycling infrastructure. A pedestrian friendly environment will follow naturally from these improvements.

Cancelling costly road infrastructure projects like the Bowen/Boxwood project. You can’t solve “congestion” by road building. No city anywhere has ever done it. Time to accept the proven law of induced demand. And related, I would like to see careful consideration given to Development Cost Charges revenues when they are used to justify road building projects. Recognition that they are taxes, not paid by the developer or the builder but by of course… the taxpayer. Are they “new monies” or diverted from elsewhere in the local economy? As taxes do they take their place in the intense competition between civic spending priorities. Are they used to pay for past road building projects and in that regard are they not part of a kind of Ponzi scheme?

The inequity between the municipal taxation yield between the inner city and the low population density suburbs should be recognized and addressed. A one size fits all transportation plan that attempts to cope with decades of poor zoning and land use decisions is, I fear, headed to failure. Cities like Nanaimo need “Inner City Containment Boundaries” in which amenities and infrastructure are commensurate with taxation yields that are four and five times higher per acre than the outlying areas. The suburbs should be prepared to see reduced services and increased taxes. The suburbs should continue to be a consumer alternative for those prepared to pay their costs.

• And finally, I want to submit as formally as possible (by some official protocol in place if required) a request to your Transportation Advisory Committee to require that the Transportation Master Plan be peer reviewed and critiqued. I’ve mentioned earlier SFU’s Gordon Price or former Vancouver Chief Planner Brent Toderian could offer fresh prospective. The organizations working with Red Deer Alberta, as you and your staff and consultant know, Danish architect Jan Gehl and Cities 8-80 headed by Gil Penalosa, would also be prospects. 

Few things will have a greater impact on the civic, social and economic life of Nanaimo than fresh thinking about mobility in a city that has been allowed to develop to four or five times larger in square miles than begins to be sustainable.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Motordom thrives in
small exurb cities like #Nanaimo

From newurbanismblog.com
The Importance of Street Design
To Walkability