Archive for the ‘Engineering’ Category

December 10 2013

Noord-Zuidlijn in Amsterdam: Digging a Metro Line under the Historic City

December 10th, 2013Posted by 

For the last ten years, visitors of Amsterdam have been surprised at the sight of several open construction sites in the city’s historic center. Starting at Central Station, open construction sites are found throughout the city until the South/WTC railway station. The reality is that those multiple sites are all part of one big project: […]

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December 09 2013

Pipeline Explosion Exposed Qingdao’s Shortsighted Urban Planning

December 9th, 2013Posted by 

“Was it a planning problem or a design problem? Was it a technical problem or a management problem? Was it a business enterprise issue or a governmental issue?” China State Administration of Work Safety Chief Secretary Yang Dongliang asked these questions at a press conference after Sinopec’s Donghuang oil pipeline explosion caused sixty-two deaths and […]

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December 04 2013

“Recent Waterscapes: Planning, Building, and Designing with Water” Book Review

December 4th, 2013Posted by 

Recent Waterscapes: Planning, Building, and Designing with Water edited by Herbert Dreiseitl and Dieter Grau provides a comprehensive overview of innovative water-related projects throughout the world. The editors argue: “Coping with ever greater amounts of stormwater run-off from increased urbanization and fierce heavy downpours does not mean endlessly multiplying the number and capacity of technical […]

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December 03 2013

Green Roof Policies Stumble in Guangzhou, China

December 3rd, 2013Posted by 

Guangzhou has carried out the green roof policy for more than one decade, but the implementation has encountered challenges. A report released by the Guangzhou Institute of Landscape Gardening showed that the green roof area of ​​Guangzhou accounted for an estimated total area of ​​only 0.5%, which is far less than Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen. […]

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November 28 2013

The In’s And Out’s Of Benziger’s Biodynamic Winery

November 28th, 2013Posted by 

The property now encompassing the Benziger Family Winery was once the site of an outrageous experiment to create a cabernet-infused marijuana strain called “Sonoma Coma.”  Although the pot production ceased once the property was sold to the Benzigers, the 1970’s vibe of health, harmony, and environmental philosophy continues under its new ownership.  The Benziger family’s […]

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November 22 2013

Great Lakes Water Quality & Access Threatens 30 Million North Americans

November 22nd, 2013Posted by 

Michigan, being the Great Lakes State, gets a lot of attention in the national political and environmental frontier as concerns about climate change and access to fresh water begin to surface in conversations. As the largest group of freshwater lakes in the world, keeping the Great Lakes great will soon become a priority for environmental […]

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November 22 2013

Matatus: Nairobi’s Leader of Transportation Since 1973

November 22nd, 2013Posted by 

Mobility, sustainability, and identity are three key elements for good cities. Developed economies enjoy public transport systems with fixed routes, schedules, and pricing; but this is not the case in developing countries. In Africa, citizens use a variety of means to get around, ranging from small minibuses to riding on the back of motorcycles. Nairobi […]

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November 15 2013

Is the Era of Limited Energy Options in Minneapolis Over?

November 15th, 2013Posted by 

Until recently, Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy have been the only options for Minneapolis residents to receive electricity and gas. Coal is currently the largest portion of Xcel Energy’s sources, while natural gas is the largest for CenterPoint Energy. The contract these energy companies have with the city of Minneapolis is coming to a halt […]

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November 14 2013

State Transportation Grant Bolsters Long-Awaited Sonoma Valley Bike Trail

November 14th, 2013Posted by 

How incredible would it be to explore Sonoma Valley and its hundreds of wineries without spending a dime on gas or expensive tours?  Apparently it would be pretty incredible, judging by a recent state-funded grant to develop the Sonoma Valley Bike Trail, which will connect the regions wineries and parks. The $191,000 Community-Based Transportation Grant […]

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November 08 2013

Let’s Build Roads in Africa!

November 8th, 2013Posted by 

‘I will build new roads’ is a promise all politicians in Africa make to their people. This happens in spite of their constituents being well aware that the main means of travel they use may be non-motorized. In cities, however, many see roads as critical for inter and intra-urban mobility. The last decade has seen […]

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November 06 2013

The Dutch Lead the Greening of Brownfields

November 6th, 2013Posted by 

Over its fourteen years, the Canadian Brownfields Conference has shifted its focus from soil remediation methods to brownfield redevelopment, highlighting the reuse of land as a key component of urban planning and creating vibrant communities. This change was echoed in all but one of the Canadian Urbanism Institute Brownie Award winners. A rare International Brownie […]

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November 01 2013

The Minnesota-Canada Oil Bond and the Enbridge Pipeline Expansion Proposal

November 1st, 2013Posted by 

When one thinks of states hit hard by oil prices, California and Hawaii usually come to mind. However, in May 2013 the trend was reversed, with the Midwest (particularly Minnesota) leading the pack in the highest oil prices. While the prices of oil are based on a multitude of forces, with both domestic economic influences […]

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October 31 2013

Oakland, California: Revitalization and Retail Expansion on Broadway

October 31st, 2013Posted by 

As recognized by the city itself, “Oakland has long been the nation’s largest underserved Trade Area for comparison goods… export(ing) 75% of its potential sales… or roughly $1 billion in sales every year, to the neighboring communities of Emeryville, San Leandro, San Francisco, and Walnut Creek.” The city hopes to begin resolving this issue with the […]

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October 22 2013

San Francisco’s New Transbay Center: A Commitment to Sustainable Growth

October 22nd, 2013Posted by 

San Francisco is on its way to hosting the most significant transit hub on the United State’s western coast. The Transbay Transit Center will connect eight Bay Area counties through 11 transit lines, including the California High Speed Rail that is being developed, and include new housing, retail, commercial and open space. It’s a 4.5 […]

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October 03 2013

Oak to Ninth?: New Brooklyn Basin Construction Underway on Oakland’s Waterfront

October 3rd, 2013Posted by 

Over a decade after the conceptualization of the Oak to Ninth project, the stalled venture newly named Brooklyn Basin, is once again underway on Oakland’s waterfront, South-East of Laney College. The infill redevelopment came to a halt during the 2008 recession, though the lacking $1.5 billion of funding was recently secured from a Beijing-based investor, […]

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September 19 2013

The Living Building Challenge for Sustainability in the Built Environment

September 19th, 2013Posted by 

The open Sustainability Colloquium at the University of California, Berkeley is a presentation series featuring sustainability topics from leading practitioners of urban planning, architecture, landscape design, engineering, consulting, construction, development, and research. The University of California, Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design hosts an open Sustainability Colloquium directed by Professor Gail Brager on Fridays from 1-2pm […]

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September 10 2013

It’s the BAY AREA Rapid Transit, Except for Marin…They’re Exclusive

September 10th, 2013Posted by 

The BART, short for Bay Area Rapid Transit, is the key transportation system for the 390,000 daily riders in the San Francisco Bay Area. But if you look at the map below, you will notice a large piece of land without any transit lines running through it. Marin County is home to over 252,000 residents, […]

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August 23 2013

Minneapolis’ Collision of Monumental Architecture and Environmental Concerns

August 23rd, 2013Posted by 

Although for the past decade Minnesotans have debated building a new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings, it was not until footage went viral of the Metrodome Stadium roof collapse during a 2010 winter storm that national attention was given to Minneapolis’ desire for a new sports facility. This wish was granted on March 1st, 2012 […]

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August 21 2013

The Prominence of Pittsburgh’s Bridges

August 21st, 2013Posted by 

Pittsburgh has always been known for being a city located along three rivers, but being able to maneuver an expanding city along these rivers means a need for transit over such obstacles. The large amount of bridges lining the skyline have played a sizable part in the history and grandeur of the Steel City, whether […]

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August 20 2013

Indy Connect Plan Looks to Bring More Transit Options to Indianapolis

August 20th, 2013Posted by 

Indianapolis, Indiana is shaping up to be one of the greatest “little” cities in America. With a population of over 800,000 people, many argue that the only thing holding Indianapolis back from becoming one of the best is its lack of a mass transit system. But that’s not to say that transportation hasn’t been on […]

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