Category: Development + Urbanism

RT @SmartGrowthUSA: A new survey shows that Americans overwhelmingly favor policy changes to support TOD.

Not in our name

NOT IN OUR NAME by David Levinson on Transportist @trnsprtst

“We in the transport community need to advocate for measures that truly improve traffic safety, and advocate against slippery measures that are used as pretext in racism or drug war enforcement or municipal fundraising.”

Not in our name

Traffic rules and regulations are the pretext for enforcing the crime of Driving While Black. The use of traffic stops putatively for traffic safety, but in fact for revenue or harassment of minorities is wrong. This is not to say there is no use for traffic enforcement, even though evidence is mixed as to its…

Why some inner-ring suburbs succeed

“Why some inner-ring suburbs succeed” by Joshua Gunter on
Tend to the community’s soul
“OK, so you’ve done your part by buying a great house, keeping it up and going to the park. But why does a neighborhood feel less civic-spirited than before? How do you maintain the soul of your city? Great communities have residents who believe and invest in them, and that doesn’t just mean their homes. What about libraries? Schools? Do residents interact with one another, form networks, support local levies? If not, is it because they’ve lost faith in their institutions or leaders?

One failed tax levy doesn’t spell doom, especially if residents stay engaged in healthy debate. But if this results in cut after cut, a community risks losing its way.

Lakewood faced this in the 1990s, when the real estate market turned rocky, interest in home ownership dropped and decisions by schools made parents question their academic rigor, said Ned Hill, the former dean of the Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University and now a professor at Ohio State University. Lakewood residents turned down a school tax increase four times, triggering further cuts to academics. Even the New York Times noticed, writing in 1995 that the “grand mansions along Lake Erie here are still splendid, and the modest homes farther from the lakefront still neat and well kept. … But all is not as stable as it seems.”

The fifth tax levy passed. It took a lot of work and commitment. But Lakewood turned things around. “

Can car-centric suburbs adjust to aging Baby Boomers?

“Can car-centric suburbs adjust to aging Baby Boomers?” on RenewATL by Jenni Bergal

“Some researchers foresee conflicts between seniors and families with school-age children over increasingly scarce government resources. Many working- and middle-class retirees, some of whom are trapped in their suburban homes because they are still underwater — they owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth — won’t be able to afford to modify them to make them livable in old age. Some live in areas where the cost of renting or buying elsewhere would be higher than what they already pay. And subsidized housing for seniors is in short supply in the suburbs.”

Playing ‘Telephone’ with Transportation Data

“Playing ‘Telephone’ with Transportation Data” by Steven Polzin on Planetizen

“In an era where a huge share of research and media reporting has a strong advocacy orientation or motivational biases, it is critical to delve into the data being cited a little deeper. Subtle context conditions or interpretations can result in dramatically different meanings. We have enough readily available and citable and seemingly credentialed sources to find supporting evidence for virtually any perspective. Folks need to be careful about playing telephone with planning data.”