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Lessons Learned from Limiting My Water Use: You Don't Waste What You Don't Have

October 29, 2014 by Jeff McIntire-Strasburg

Water Use and Waste Prevention

I’m still thinking about my 4 Liters Challenge from a few weeks ago – it’s amazing how much we take a resource like water for granted! While a number of things I learned stand out, I constantly come back to turning on the water without even thinking about it – I had to catch myself a number of times.[read more]

Mellon Square: A Modern Masterpiece

October 29, 2014 by The Dirt ASLA

Mellon Square

Recently restored to much ado through a six-year process, Mellon Square in Pittsburgh was the first Modernist space in the nation built over a subterranean parking garage. Considered a precursor to today’s green roof movement, Mellon Square is a showcase for urban revitalization through historic preservation.[read more]

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Why Don't Sustainable Technologies Automatically Lead To More Sustainable Lives?

October 28, 2014 by David Thorpe
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 Unilever's idea of behaviour change

A new study has found that people use domestic energy-saving systems in unexpected ways – often cancelling out any savings. it's not the first to do so, raising the question: how can we encourage people to lead more sustainable lives? I'm wondering whether it is to do with our beliefs. What do you think?[read more]

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Who'd Have Thought an Insurance Company Could Write a Manifesto on Managing Sustainable Cities?

October 28, 2014 by David Thorpe

Street in New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy

"We believe sustainability is fundamentally about risk management", says one insurance company. And it's not alone.[read more]

Learning From the 'White City'

October 28, 2014 by Dean Saitta

History and Living Spaces

 

It’s not the White City that would likely come to mind first, i.e., the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Rather, it’s a white canvas tent colony that appeared 20 years later and about 1,000 miles to the southwest, near the railroad depot (now a ghost town) of Ludlow, Colorado.[read more]

Klyde Warren Park Wins Open Space Award

October 28, 2014 by The Dirt ASLA

Winning Dallas Park

Klyde Warren Park in Dallas won the Urban Land Institute’s 2014 Open Space Award, which recognizes “public spaces that have socially and economically enriched and revitalized their communities.” Completed in 2012, the 5-acre park is a green roof, decking over the sunken Woodall Rogers Freeway.[read more]

Halifax Turns its Library into the City's Living Room

October 28, 2014 by Jillian Glover

Libraries and Public Placemaking

As libraries struggle to stay relevant against the instant allure of e-readers, Google, Netflix and online music streaming, Halifax is taking a big step in making them cool again. The city is currently transforming its Halifax Central Public Library into a community hub for the digital age.[read more]

Five Farms Pushing the Boundaries of Indoor Agriculture

October 28, 2014 by Seedstock Sustainable Agriculture

Indoor Agriculture Innovation

Indoor farms are the new and innovative way to grow greens. Modern indoor farms are quite large and filled with state-of-the-art technologies – they aren’t the tiny greenhouses of yesteryear. We’ve rounded up five indoor farms to give you a taste of what the most innovative growing organizations are producing.[read more]

Comparing Taxis to Ride Sharing Services

October 28, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Taxis and Ride Sharing Side-by-Side

I recently woke up to a post from venture capitalist Fred Wilson talking about the cost of loyalty when it comes to local transportation markets. It was a cost comparison between regular city taxis and ride sharing services such as a UberX, Lyft, and Sidecar in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York.[read more]

Traffic Fatalities Kill More than Disease in Brazil

October 28, 2014 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Brazil and Traffic Safety

If you are afraid of being killed by a thug on the street, do not worry. Well, not quite. Data shows that you may be more likely to die in traffic accidents than by murder or cancer in Brazil. Traffic fatalities are an epidemic, claiming the lives of 1.24 million people per year.[read more]

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Cities Should Provide Children with More Opportunities for Play to Counter Health, Social Problems

October 27, 2014 by David Thorpe

Play is not only vital, but providing facilities encourages families to move to a city.

An appeal has been made for cities to make more space for children to play in order not just to counter the many health, learning and social problems that are due to today's kids playing less than people's generations, but to make cities themselves more attractive and safe places for young families to move to.[read more]

Without More Than a Vision, the People Perish

October 27, 2014 by Julian Dobson

Urban Vision and Future Planning

Setting visions for cities can be challenging. The Welsh Government has risen to that challenge with its regeneration program. Here’s its vision statement: "Everybody in Wales should live in well-connected vibrant, viable and sustainable communities with a strong local economy and good quality of life."[read more]

Congratulations, Your City Is Dying!

October 27, 2014 by Jim Russell
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Dying Cities

In general, a declining population translates into a dying place. For a place (city or nation-state), dying can also refer to the aging of the overall population. If everyone is too old to work, then who will pay for the health care? Save the wildcard of migration, more deaths than births is an existential threat.[read more]

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Smart Phones Are the Key to Sustainable Off-Grid Power

October 27, 2014 by Sophie Curtis

Smart Phones and Mobile Business

BuffaloGrid brings power as a service to off-grid populations and communities, which enables all those mobile phones which the UN identified as the biggest contributors to economic growth in these regions. Now power can be just a text message away.[read more]

Housing, Politics, and a Basic Pride of Place

October 27, 2014 by Chuck Wolfe

Housing, Politics, and Places

What do the politics of urban housing have to do with a seasonal caravan park in Provence? For me, the answer is clear. Our political discussions, mired in jargon and positioning, often lose sight of a human pride of place inherent in even the simplest forms of shelter.[read more]

Leveraging the Value of Heritage in Malaysia through Placemaking

October 27, 2014 by Project for Public Spaces

Malaysia History and Placemaking

Think City, an urban regeneration group based in Georgetown, Penang, is making big waves in the Placemaking world. Founded in 2009, Think City has been helping Georgetown, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, preserve its cultural history while also creating an economically and socially vibrant city.[read more]

How Ciclovías Contribute to Mobility and Quality of Life in Latin America and in Cities Worldwide

October 27, 2014 by TheCityFix - produced by EMBARQ

Mobility in Latin America

Though rapid urbanization can impair mobility and damage quality of life, Latin American cities have responded to this difficult challenge with a variety of creative, low cost, and high impact solutions. Some of these initiatives have set an example for the rest of the world.[read more]

Biking to Buy: How Campaigners in Whitechapel are Using the Money in their Pocket to Lobby for Change

October 26, 2014 by Mark K Ames

Biking to Buy

When the original Cycle Superhighways were laid out in Boris Johnson's first term as mayor of London, not all Cycle Superhighways were made equal. Some - like CS3 along Cable Street - were very good. Others - like CS2 along the Whitechapel Road - were very bad.[read more]

Can Transport Speak to Development?

October 26, 2014 by Future Cape Town

Transport and Development

Here we recap eight of the main ideas of the Institute for Transportation & Development Policy (ITDP) for transit-oriented development, including things like high-quality and unobstructed pedestrian footpaths for better urban walkability, and improved street design to ensure the safety of cyclists.[read more]

Golden Gate Bridge Sidewalk Toll is just the Latest in a String of Bad Ideas

October 26, 2014 by David Edmondson

Like many bad notions, the idea of charging a toll on bicyclists and pedestrians crossing the Golden Gate Bridge has risen from its apparent grave. As it has before, the proposal has raised the ire of bike coalitions on both sides of the bridge, not to mention smart growth organizations in San Francisco.[read more]

Top 10 U.S. Cities for Young Smart People

October 26, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Cities for the Young and Smart

I’m always on the lookout for great websites and communities dedicated to cities. And thanks to a friend of mine, I found a new one called City Observatory. It’s my new favorite site for city geeks. They describe themselves as a “data-driven platform for sharing, analyzing and discussing the success of cities.”[read more]

The Many, Many Health Benefits of Water [INFOGRAPHIC]

October 25, 2014 by Jeff McIntire-Strasburg

The Importance of Water

Drinking water is good for you. Duh! Yes, we all know that water is vital to maintaining health, and even life itself; if asked to name the health benefits of water beyond “maintaining health and life itself,” though, most of us might find ourselves stumped.[read more]

Are Tech Companies the Cure for San Francisco's Homeless 'Epidemic?'

October 25, 2014 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

San Francisco Homeless

People step over the homeless wearing shoes worth more than that individual earns in a year begging on the streets of San Francisco. Most treat San Francisco’s homeless population similar to a chronic condition. It is seen as an issue which is constantly looming over the city, but will never be resolved.[read more]

London Garage to Sell for £550,000

October 25, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

London's Valuable Real Estate

A garage located in the Chelsea area of London measures about 11’ x 7’ and it’s expected to go for more than £550,000 at auction, which would make it the most expensive garage ever sold in the UK. The site area is 535 square foot, about the size of an average one bedroom condo in Toronto.[read more]

Local Food Hub Works on Getting Beyond Commodity Corn in The Hoosier State

October 25, 2014 by Seedstock Sustainable Agriculture

Local Food Hub in Indiana

That sweet corn at your nearest supermarket chain probably was not grown locally. In all likelihood, neither were the green beans, lettuce or apples. Husk is trying to change that. With headquarters in Indiana, the startup is aiming to make sure locally-produced food at supermarkets and not just farmers’ markets.[read more]

Voices of the City: Cyril Naicker

October 25, 2014 by Future Cape Town

City Voices of Cape Town

Voices of the City is a weekly feature that spotlights the everyday lives of our citizens, living and working in the city. This week we hear from Cyril Naicker, the creative director of CT inVogue. Naicker is currently developing MyVogue Africa – a fashion reality series.[read more]

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Europe Sets 40% Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Target for 2030

October 24, 2014 by David Thorpe

Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action in the European Commission, at the summit.

European leaders have set binding targets of at least 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, 27% for the share of renewable energy consumed, and an indicative target of 27% for improving energy efficiency.[read more]

The Story of Two Urban Giants [VIDEO]

October 24, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Skyscrapers and History

I recently stumbled upon an interesting documentary about two New York skyscrapers that were built in the 1930s as telecommunications buildings: the Western Union Building and the AT&T Long Lines Building. It’s fascinating to see how they have evolved along with technological change.[read more]

Portland, a Global Model of Transit-Oriented Development [VIDEO]

October 24, 2014 by Future Cape Town

Portland Transit Oriented Development

Portland, the largest city in Oregon with over 600,000 inhabitants has become a global model of transit-oriented development. Peter Calthorpe, a founding member of the Congress for New Urbanism was one of the original pioneers of transit-oriented development.[read more]

Cheating Demographic Doom: Pittsburgh Exceptionalism and Japan's Surprising Economic Resilience

October 24, 2014 by Jim Russell

Demographic Doom and Risk

Pittsburgh holds the dubious distinction of having the lowest share (10.8 percent) of children among the 52 largest metros. Imagine this cohort aging in place, no one leaving or arriving. Without the benefit of migration, Pittsburgh will become the smallest of the big metros.[read more]