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    Published on 28 Nov 2012 8:00 AM
    Categories:
    1. Transportation
    2. Urban Design
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    by Carly Sieff

    We have all heard ad-nauseum that obesity rates in the United States are increasing radically. But what has changed so dramatically in our lives to cause these rates to double in the past 50 years from 13% in 1962 to 26.1% in 2011 (CDC)? Trends in housing show that destinations are getting farther from origins, as houses move closer to the cul-de-sac and retail becomes part of a strip mall creeping towards the highway. Naturally then, streets have become more dangerous; they are filled with fast moving drivers, afraid to leave their automobile until they are safely pulled into the garage. The ‘low-hanging fruit’ of physical activity, that which was previously engrained in the walk and bike commutes of our daily lives, have practically disappeared for most of us. But I believe I am not alone is denying the need for 4 tons of sheet metal, a 200 horsepower engine, requiring a 180 square foot parking space and emitting 425 grams of CO2 just to get me a mile down the block. If only we could recreate the land use and transportation network of the city and its travel preferences before drive-thrus and strip malls. ...
    Published on 26 Jul 2012 8:00 AM
    Categories:
    1. Transportation
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    by Larry Krieg

    I've been visiting a wide variety of cites, looking at their transit with an eye on their Transit Oriented Development (TOD). Some of these cities have had transit - specifically rail transit - "forever"; others started several decades ago; and still others are recent developments. It's interesting to compare these types of cities and speculate on the future of the newer efforts in light of the older ones. I'll introduce the idea today, and look at details in future posts. ...
    Published on 25 Jul 2012 8:00 AM
    Categories:
    1. Humor
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    By Neno J, Spagna, DPA

    Harry Lindburg never dreamed he would ever see a pig that barks like a dog, much less own one, but that is exactly what happened to him, and, his life has never been the same ever since. ...
    Published on 08 Jun 2012 8:00 AM
    Categories:
    1. Transportation
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    by Erin Chantry

    The concept of perceived safety vs. actual safety is a concept that filters through all layers of urban design. Similarly, pedestrians might be actually safe walking along a city street alongside lifeless buildings with blank walls. But they probably won't feel safe because people need other people in close proximity when they are in a public space to feel comfortable. Therefore they won't walk there. Similarly, while I might be actually safe riding my bike down a collector road in my neighborhood since I have a dedicated bike lane and two 10' lanes of traffic, I do not feel safe. Therefore, I do not ride. ...
    Published on 07 Jun 2012 8:00 AM
    Categories:
    1. Planning Practice

    By Perry Norton FAICP

    Today is the beginning of all future time. Yesterday is past and we can do nothing about it. The present passes by so swiftly that we can scarcely touch it. Only tomorrow is amenable to our plans and our schemes, and so it is for tomorrow that we plan.

    Obvious, right? But even for those of us who call ourselves planners this is difficult to grasp. We still tend to AWAIT tomorrow, to wait to see what will happen. As much as we would like to think of ourselves as PROactive, we are, in fact, mostly REactive. ...

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